Spatializing relationalities of urban diversity and coexistence: interrogating inclusion and difference in public space

Authors: Junjia Ye*, Nanyang Technological University
Topics: Urban Geography, Migration, Social Geography
Keywords: Urban diversity, migration, relationality, integration, subjectivity
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/14/2018
Start / End Time: 8:00 AM / 9:40 AM
Room: Mid-City, Sheraton, 8th Floor
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


The growing “diversity-turn” in the social scientific study of migrant-led urban change is an exciting opportunity for geographers. While much has been said about encounters with difference and diversity in public spaces, there has been a silence on the very nature of incorporation within these spatial negotiations and transformations. This paper examines the spatial and political implications of inclusion by identifying two key strands of geographical imaginations specifically in the growing fields of urban diversity and coexistence. In doing so, this paper aims to retain critical analytical purchase on what living with difference in shared spaces specifically through “inclusion” means. Measures of inclusion also carry out the political work of citizen-subject making. That is to say, governance through measures of inclusion shapes what form belonging takes and, consequently, who belongs and who does not. Rather than being intriniscally open or opposed to exclusion, the aggregate processes of “integration” alluded to above render people subject to particular imaginaries of diversity. Through this analytical framework, this theoretical paper then outlines the agenda for future debate and research. In critically foregrounding “inclusion”, there needs to be the punctual address of the impact of structural inequalities on perceived “positive outcomes” of urban diversity, contingent effects of the characteristics and histories of migrant populations and the local politics of place.

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