Monstrous Politics: Geography, Rights, and the Urban Revolution in Mexico City - Ben Gerlofs; | Foyles Bookstore
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Monstrous Politics: Geography, Rights, and the Urban Revolution in Mexico City
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Monstrous Politics: Geography, Rights, and the Urban Revolution in Mexico City (Hardback)

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The birth of the world's great megacities is the surest and starkest harbinger of the "urban age" inaugurated in the twentieth century. As the world's urban population achieves majority for the first time in recorded history, theories proliferate on the nature of urban politics, including the shape and quality of urban democracy, the role of urban social and political movements, and the prospects for progressive and emancipatory change from the corridors of powerful states to the routinized rhythms of everyday life. At stake are both the ways in which the rapidly changing urban world is understood and the urban futures being negotiated by the governments and populations struggling to contend with these changes and forge a place in contemporary cities.

Transdisciplinary by design, Monstrous Politics first moves historically through Mexico City's turbulent twentieth century, driven centrally by the contentious imbrication of the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) and its capital city. Participant observation, expert interviews, and archival materials demonstrate the shifting strategies and alliances of recent decades, provide the reader with a sense of the texture of contemporary political life in the city during a time of unprecedented change, and locate these dynamics within the history and geography of twentieth-century urbanization and political revolution. Substantive ethnographic chapters trace the emergence and decline of the political language of "the right to the city," the establishment and contestation of a "postpolitical" governance regime, and the culmination of a century of urban politics in the processes of "political reform" by which Mexico City finally wrested back significant political autonomy and local democracy from the federal state.

A four-fold transection of the revolutionary structure of feeling that pervades the city in this historic moment illustrates the complex and contradictory sentiments, appraisals, and motivations through which contemporary politics are understood and enacted. Drawing on theories of social revolution that embrace complexity, and espousing a methodology that foregrounds the everyday nature of politics, Monstrous Politics develops an understanding of revolutionary urban politics at once contextually nuanced and conceptually expansive, and thus better able to address the realities of politics in the "urban age" even beyond Mexico City.

History & PoliticsHistory: specific events & topicsSocial & cultural historyHistory & PoliticsRegional & national historyHistory of the AmericasPhilosophy, Psychology & Social SciencesSocial groupsUrban communitiesPhilosophy, Psychology & Social SciencesSociologyPopulation & demographyScience & MathematicsGeographyHuman geography Publisher: Vanderbilt University Press Publication Date: 15/01/2023 ISBN-13: 9780826504784  Details: Type: Hardback Format: Books
Availability: Pre-order for despatch on publication. Pre-Order

Ben Gerlofs is an assistant professor in the Department of Geography at the University of Hong Kong.

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