Constructing Community

Constructing Community : Configurations of the Social in Contemporary Philosophy and Urbanism

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Constructing Community is a provocative and original analysis of the question of urban politics in contemporary liberal democracies.This book examines community from the particular perspective of the shaping and control of urban space in contemporary liberal democracies. Further, it offers a strong case for reconsidering current debates on democratic politics in light of the connection between political power and the control of public space and the built more

Product details

  • Hardback | 180 pages
  • 165.1 x 231.14 x 17.78mm | 975.22g
  • Lexington Books
  • Lanham, MD, United States
  • English
  • black & white illustrations, figures
  • 0739139665
  • 9780739139660
  • 2,129,973

Review quote

Constructing Community presents a compelling argument about the nature and prospects of urban communities. First, Brian Elliott provides a general account of the self-organization of dissenting, or resisting, localized communities. His approach combines key aspects of "dialogical" (Habermas) and "singular" (Agamben/Nancy) conceptions of social formation. Applying this model to cities like Portland, Oregon, he explains why "New Urbanists" and "postmodern urbanists" run into problems analogous to those faced by theorists of community. He defends a version of dialectical utopianism that is sensitive to both the communicative power of discourse and the exigencies of bare life. Much as Benjamin taught us to think of Paris as the capital of the nineteenth century, Elliott invites us to imagine a dialectically utopian Portland as the capital of the twenty-first. -- Andrew Cutrofello, Loyola University, Chicago Following an exposure of weaknesses that he detects in a variety of post-Habermasian conceptions of the just community, Brian Elliott supports his alternative conception with detailed descriptions of grassroots urban movements demonstrating that traditional liberal rights productive of identity and consensus demand supplementation by a right to a space that is productive of dissent and direct action. His case is presented with cool passion, breadth of vision, and dazzling forensic skill. -- John Llewelyn, University of Edinburghshow more

About Brian Elliott

Brian Elliott teaches in the philosophy department at Oregon State University and is author of Walter Benjamin for more

Table of contents

Part 1 Introduction Part 2 I. Part One. Theories of Community Chapter 3 1. Habermas and Dialogical Community Chapter 4 2. Singular Community Chapter 5 3. Dissenting Community Part 6 II. Urbanism and Community Chapter 7 4. New Urbanism Chapter 8 5. Postmodern Urbanism Chapter 9 6. Dialectical Utopianism Part 10 Bibliographyshow more