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Urban Imaginaries

Locating the Modern City

2007

Alev Çınar and Thomas Bender, editors

Urban Imaginaries

New global perspectives on urban life

The essays in Urban Imaginaries focus on how social and physical space is conceived as both indefinite and singular and offer case studies on cities in Brazil, Israel, Turkey, Lebanon, and India, as well as in the United States and France.

Contributors: Margaret Cohen, Camilla Fojas, Beatriz Jaguaribe, Anthony D. King, Mark LeVine, Srirupa Roy, Seteney Shami, AbdouMaliq Simone, Maha Yahya, Deniz Yükseker.

Urban Imaginaries is a distinctively interdisciplinary collection that pointedly avoids a Eurocentric focus. Many of the cities studied are situated outside the North Atlantic, with a strong concentration on the ‘Islamic world,’ such as the geopolitically important Middle Eastern cities of Tel Aviv and Beirut.

Pheng Cheah, author of Inhuman Conditions: On Cosmopolitanism and Human Rights

For millennia, the city stood out against the landscape, walled and compact. This concept of the city was long accepted as adequate for characterizing the urban experience. However, the nature of the city, both real and imagined, has always been more permeable than this model reveals.

The essays in Urban Imaginaries respond to this condition by focusing on how social and physical space is conceived as both indefinite and singular. They emphasize the ways this space is shared and thus made into urban culture. Urban Imaginaries offers case studies on cities in Brazil, Israel, Turkey, Lebanon, and India, as well as in the United States and France, and in doing so blends social, cultural, and political approaches to better understand the contemporary urban experience.

Contributors: Margaret Cohen, Stanford U; Camilla Fojas, De Paul U; Beatriz Jaguaribe, Federal U of Rio de Janeiro; Anthony D. King, SUNY Binghamton; Mark LeVine, U of California, Irvine; Srirupa Roy, U of Massachusetts, Amherst; Seteney Shami, Social Science Research Council; AbdouMaliq Simone, New School U; Maha Yahya; Deniz Yükseker, Koç U, Istanbul.

Urban Imaginaries

Alev Çınar is associate professor of political science and public administration at Bilkent University, Turkey.

Thomas Bender is university professor of the humanities and history at New York University.

Urban Imaginaries

Urban Imaginaries is a distinctively interdisciplinary collection that pointedly avoids a Eurocentric focus. Many of the cities studied are situated outside the North Atlantic, with a strong concentration on the ‘Islamic world,’ such as the geopolitically important Middle Eastern cities of Tel Aviv and Beirut.

Pheng Cheah, author of Inhuman Conditions: On Cosmopolitanism and Human Rights

The editors are to be commended for providing an open platform for multiple perspectives on specific locations.

Modernism/Modernity

An edited volume exploring what we mean by ‘urban’ through case studies is most welcome. And it delivers.

Contemporary Sociology

Urban Imaginaries offers interesting examples of cities that challenge the notion of a hard city with clear borders and the way in which the media construct realities that are valuable for architects, historians and artists.

Leonardo Review

Urban Imaginaries is well written and accessible to a broader sociological audience. I would strongly recommend Urban Imaginaries to readers . . . Urban Imaginaries would be a particularly wise choice for adoption in senior undergraduate courses in urban anthropology, and in comparative urban sociology and politics.

Canadian Journal of Sociology

The strength of Urban Imaginaries lies in its diversity—disciplinary, temporal, methodological, and topical.

Professional Geographer