Course Schedule

(NOTE: some of this may change – and likely will – over the course of the semester)

January 29th, WEEK 1: Introduction :: HOUSING


  • Walter Benjamin, Paris, Capital of the Nineteenth Century (1939 expose) – pp13-26 in The Arcades Project (13pp)
  • Ruth Eaton, Ideal Cities, Ch6
  • Sherilyn MacGregor Deconstructing the Man Made City: Feminist Critiques of Planning Thought and Action
  • Lewis Mumford, The Culture of Cities (excerpts) (4pp)
  • Mike Davis, Planet of Slums. Ch1
  • STRC, To what will we resort when capitalism is over? Human Geography (10pp)

February 12th, WEEK 3: Waste Management :: EVERYDAY LIFE/PROPERTY

  • Catherine McNeur, “The “Swinish Multitude”: Controversies over Hogs in Antebellum New York City. Journal of Urban History 2011 (37) p639 (11pp)
  • Julie Sze, Noxious New York: The Racial Politics of Urban Health and Environmental Justice (Ch1) (22pp)
  • Laura Pulido, Rethinking Environmental Racism: White Privledge and Urban Development in Southern California. Annals of American Geographers V90.1 (2000) pp12-40.
  • Mike Davis, Planet of Slums, Ch6 (30pp)

February 19th, WEEK 4: Waste Management Part II :: (POST)FORDISM

BOOK PRESENTATIONS: Aubrey Murdock on Getting Green Done (Schendler)

  • Brian Milani, Designing the Green Economy CH 2, 4, 5 (45pp)
  • Jamie Peck et al Neoliberal Urbanism: Models, Moments, Mutations SAIS Review v29.1 (2009)
  • Heather Rogers, Gone Tomorrow CH 3,4,5

February 26th, WEEK 5: Production at/of the Margins :: HOUSING/UNEVEN DEVELOPMENT/INFRASTRUCTURE

BOOK PRESENTATIONS: Anze Zadel on Green Illusions (Zehrner) and Braden Crooks on Natural Capitalism (Lovins et al)

  • Brian Milani, Designing the Green Economy CH 6, 7 (24pp)
  • Loic Wacquant, Deadly Symbiosis: When ghetto and prison meet and mesh, Punishment & Society 3.1 (2001) (25pp)
  • Stephen Graham, “Urban metabolism as target: Contemporary war as forced demodernization” In the Nature of cities CH 15 (18pp)
  • David Harvey, Justice Nature and Geography of Difference Ch14: Possible Urban Worlds (35pp)

March 5th, WEEK 6: Aesthetics of/against Survival :: INFRASTRUCTURE/EVERYDAY LIFE/HOUSING

BOOK PRESENTATIONS: Jessica Kisner Giraldo on Green Urbanism (Beatley) and Alexander Roesch on Slow Money (Tasch)

  • Brian Milani, Designing the Green Economy CH 8,9 (46pp)
  • Benjamin Weil, Solar city, bike city, growth city: governance and energy in Davis, California
  • Don Mitchell and Nik Heynen, “The Geography of Survival and the Right to the City: Speculations on Surveillance, Legal Innovation, and the Criminalization of Intervention” Urban Geography 2009 (21pp)
  • D. Asher Ghertner, “Green Evictions: environmental discourses of a slum free Dehli” Global Political Ecology Ch 7 (22pp)

March 12th, WEEK 7: Valuing Urban Natures :: SPECTACLE/PROPERTY

BOOK PRESENTATIONS: Jesseka Metts on Biomimicry (Benyus) Gabrielle Anderson on Ecomind (Lappe) and Caitlin Charlet on Cradle to Cradle (McDonough and Braungart)

  • Matthew Gandy, Urban Nature and the ecological imaginary, In the Nature of Cities pp62-72 (10pp)
  • Neil Smith, Forward, In the Nature of Cities (4pp)
  • David Harvey, Ch7, Ch8(part1): Valuing Nature, Justice Nature and Geography of Difference pp151-182 (31pp)
  • Heather Rogers, Gone Tomorrow Ch 6,7

March 19th, WEEK 8: Gentrification :: PROPERTY/HOUSING

PITCH SESSION in CLASS (pitches due by Monday the 18th, 5pm)

  • Neil Smith, The New Urban Frontier Ch1,2,3,4 (85pp)
  • David Harvey, Rebel Cities Ch 4: The Art of Rent (24pp)
  • Brian Milani, Designing the Green Economy CH 10,11 (46pp)

March 26th, SPRING BREAK

April 2nd, WEEK 9:  Cities, Commons, Commodities :: EVERYDAY LIFE/PROPERTY

BOOK PRESENTATIONS: Charles Wirene on Capitalism 3.0 (Barnes) and Katya Levitskaya on Ecotechnic Future (Greer)

  • David Harvey, Rebel Cities Ch 3: The Creation of the Urban Commons (22pp)
  • Julie Sze, Noxious New York: The Racial Politics of Urban Health and Environmental Justice (Ch2) (42pp)
  • Karen Baaker, “Commons versus commodities: political ecologies of water privatization”  Global Political Ecology Ch16 (23pp)

April 9th, WEEK 10: Utopia Insurgent :: UTOPIA/SPECTACLE

BOOK PRESENTATIONS: Charles Wirene on Capitalism 3.0 (Barnes) and Katya Levitskaya on Ecotechnic Future (Greer)Readings:

  • Ward, Anthony. (1996). The Suppression of the Social in Design: Architecture as War in Reconstructing Architecture:Critical Discourses and Social Practices, Eds Dutton and Mann. University of Minnesota Press. [~40 pgs]
  • Ferguson, Sarah. (1999). The Death of Little Puerto Rico OR A Brief History of Grassroots Greening on the Lower East Side In Avant Gardening: Ecological Struggle In The City & The World, Eds Wilson and Weinberg. Autonomedia. [~10-20 pgs]
  • Rosol, Marit. (2012). “Community Volunteering as Neoliberal Strategy? Green Space Production in Berlin” Antipode 44(1). [~13 pgs]

Tactical Urbanism, DIY Urbanism, Spontaneous Interventions:

Placemaking & the case of the Dekalb market

April 16th, WEEK 11: Post Capitalist possibilities :: UTOPIA/EVERYDAY LIFE

BOOK PRESENTATIONS: Jonathan Lapalme on Transition Towns (Hopkins) and Blair Lorenzo on Climatopolis (Kahn)

  • Greg Sharzer, No Local, Ch4(87-120), Ch5 (121-138) (50pp)
  • JK Gibson Graham and Gerda Roelvink, “An Economics for the Anthropocene” Anitpode 41.1 (2009) (24pp)

April 23rd, WEEK 12: A critique of everyday life :: EVERYDAY LIFE/SPECTACLE

BOOK PRESENTATIONS: Sabrina Dorsainvil on Green Collar Economy (Jones)

  • Henri Lefebvre, Rhythmanalysis (selections)
  • Stefan Kipfer, “How Lefebvre Urbanized Gramsci: Hegemony, everyday life, and difference” (18pp)
  • Marshal Berman, All that is Solid Melts Into Air: Culture and the Contradictions of Capitalism (pp120-130) (10pp)
  • Guy Debord, Society of the Spectacle CH VII: The organization of territory (19pp)

April 30th, WEEK 13: Financialization :: (POST)FORDISM/PROPERTY

  • Karen Ho, Liquidated. Ch3: Wall Street Historiographies and the Shareholder Value Revolution (46pp)
  • David Harvey, Rebel Cities Ch2: The Urban Rots of Capitalist Crises (39pp)


  • Karl Marx, Grundrisse (selections)
216-226  (10pp)
266-279 (13pp)
295-310 (15pp)
324-326 (3pp)
398-402 (5pp)
407-410 (3pp)
604-610 (6pp)
690-714 (24pp)

May 7th, WEEK 14: Urbanity in the Anthropocene :: UNEVEN DEVELOPMENT/PROPERTY/SPECTACLE


  • Mike Hodson and Simon Marvin “Urban Ecological Security: A New Urban Paradigm?” Urban Worlds 33.1 (193-215) (20pp)
  • Neil Smith, “New Globalism, New Urbanism: Gentrification as Global Urban Strategy” Antipode  (2002) (20pp)
  • Matthew Gandy, “Cyborg Urbanization: Complexity and Monstrosity in the Contemporary City” Int. j of Urban and Regional Reseach. March 2005, 26-49 (17pp)

May 14th, WEEK 15: postscripts



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