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Public lecture: The fugitives - blackness as urban method

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As part of the Distinguished Visitors Scheme, Professor AbdouMaliq Simone (Professor of Sociology and Urbanism, Max Planck Institute for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversity) will be visiting the Department from Tuesday 3rd to Thursday 5th November 2015.

AbdouMaliq Simone is one of the leading urbanists of our time. He has shown repeatedly how misleading is the characterisation of ‘failed cities’ across Africa and South-East Asia by revealing the sustaining relations, networks, and structures enabling life in the most precarious of city landscapes. Working extensively in and at the edges of cities such as Douala, and Dakar, in Jeddah, Johannesburg, and Jakarta, Simone has crafted uniquely creative methodological engagements at the interface of planning and postcolonial studies, urban policy, global studies, and critical theory as well as a critical analytics for comprehending ‘rogue urbanism’ and the ‘cities yet to come’.

In this lecture, Simone will address the question “What is the ‘common sense’ of cities?”.¬†With so much attention today focusing on smart urban government to cope with global uncertainty and turbulence, where should we place the very concrete efforts that constructed the city, with all the layers of physical and cultural memory that new regimes usually attempt to cover-up or suppress?¬† Invoking blackness as an analytical method, these questions are addressed through thinking about how long histories of urban practices deployed by Black residents of cities across the world might challenge and reinvent the sense of an urban commons.

This talk is part of the Department of Geography - Distinguished International Fellows series.

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