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The city as world-place: transterritorial flows and territorial order in a Nuremberg neighbourhood


Berndt, Christian; Boeckler, Marc (2007). The city as world-place: transterritorial flows and territorial order in a Nuremberg neighbourhood. Environment and Planning A, 39(7):1545-1563.

Abstract

Approaching struggles for political representation through a perspective of `methodological transterritorialism', we seek to make sense of recent developments evolving around a territorialised urban neighbourhood. Werderau, a garden suburb founded by a mechanical engineering company at the beginning of the 20th century, enjoyed relative protection from globalising frictions and struggles until the `world-in-motion' suddenly penetrated the community a few years ago. We begin by charting the production of the bounded settlement as a site of alternate social ordering at a time of hyperindustrialisation and its imaginary role as a territorial heterotopia, symbolising order in a seemingly chaotic urban world. Turning to the owner's decision to sell the neighbourhood in 1998, we then argue that long-term inhabitants discursively frame the events following the decision as `transterritorial pollution' of their bounded community, reflected in the commodification of their neighbourhood and in an `invasion' of non-German home-owners. After discussing how longer term residents attempt to restabilise their identities by taking up a xenophobic discourse, we conclude by criticising policy-makers for responding solely in a territorial logic and for one-sidedly taking up the discourse advanced by long-term residents. Instead, we advance a utopian vision of the city as a worldly site where people live under conditions of `transcultural Gleich-Gültigkeit' in the double meaning of the German term: understood as being `indifferent' towards the proximate other as well as referring to equality and equal rights.

Abstract

Approaching struggles for political representation through a perspective of `methodological transterritorialism', we seek to make sense of recent developments evolving around a territorialised urban neighbourhood. Werderau, a garden suburb founded by a mechanical engineering company at the beginning of the 20th century, enjoyed relative protection from globalising frictions and struggles until the `world-in-motion' suddenly penetrated the community a few years ago. We begin by charting the production of the bounded settlement as a site of alternate social ordering at a time of hyperindustrialisation and its imaginary role as a territorial heterotopia, symbolising order in a seemingly chaotic urban world. Turning to the owner's decision to sell the neighbourhood in 1998, we then argue that long-term inhabitants discursively frame the events following the decision as `transterritorial pollution' of their bounded community, reflected in the commodification of their neighbourhood and in an `invasion' of non-German home-owners. After discussing how longer term residents attempt to restabilise their identities by taking up a xenophobic discourse, we conclude by criticising policy-makers for responding solely in a territorial logic and for one-sidedly taking up the discourse advanced by long-term residents. Instead, we advance a utopian vision of the city as a worldly site where people live under conditions of `transcultural Gleich-Gültigkeit' in the double meaning of the German term: understood as being `indifferent' towards the proximate other as well as referring to equality and equal rights.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Institute of Geography
Dewey Decimal Classification:910 Geography & travel
Language:English
Date:2007
Deposited On:28 Mar 2013 10:27
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 16:43
Publisher:Pion
ISSN:0308-518X
Free access at:Publisher DOI. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1068/a38484

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