Housed on Bucharest’s Margins: the Emergence of the Modern Mahala

Authors: Dominic Teodorescu*, Uppsala University
Topics: Urban Geography, Qualitative Research, East Europe
Keywords: Revanchism, marginality, postsocialism
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/10/2018
Start / End Time: 8:00 AM / 9:40 AM
Room: Galerie 5, Marriott, 2nd Floor
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


Almost 30 years have passed since state-socialism came to an end and several scholars sought to establish how the Romanian housing market has unfolded within a changing economic context and a strongly altered welfare system. This paper considers the most disadvantaged postsocialist groups in Romanian society and aims to advance our understanding of the housing situation in newly concentrated poor urban spaces. In developing such analysis, this article draws on local insights from Ferentari, a neighbourhood in Bucharest where most residents I spoke saw a gradual degradation of their dwelling and living environment and do not expect any improvement soon. Not surprisingly, a strong indifference towards present-day politics and a potentially better and more inclusive space has colonised most minds. By studying their housing conditions and socioeconomic situation this article aims to illuminate the sudden emergence and diverse character of Romania’s underprivileged neighbourhoods: the Modern Mahalas.

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