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Animating the urban vortex: new sociological urgencies

Hall, Suzanne M. ORCID: 0000-0002-0660-648X and Savage, Mike ORCID: 0000-0003-4563-9564 (2016) Animating the urban vortex: new sociological urgencies. International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, 40 (1). 82 - 95. ISSN 0309-1317

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Identification Number: 10.1111/1468-2427.12304


The current era of global urbanization is defined by a convergence of economic and political crises, which requires urgent sociological reflection on the meaning of the ‘urban’ today. This paper responds to the current rethinking of worldwide processes of urbanization sparked off by Brenner and Schmid (2013) and Brenner (2013), and argues for a renewed sociological approach to urban formations that probe beyond the economic logic of urban “de-territorialization”, towards the capricious life-worlds and forms of planetary organization that are of the urban. We pursue a theory of the urban vortex to capture the maelstrom of a disorienting milieu of crisis since 2008, and expand on the social formations of the urban to explicate the constructed, materialized and practised presence of power and transgression. Our aim is to consider what forms of social change emerge in a volatile, intense and centralized dynamism (the urban vortex), and how this might relate to global arrangements of interconnectivity, particularity and variegation (the planetary). Our paper highlights three prominent processes of urban social formation including accumulation, stratification and hyperdiversity - re-instating the need to theorize the centrality of the city as a means of comprehending the condition of urban crises and the crisis of urban definition.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2015 Urban Research Publications Limited
Divisions: Sociology
LSE Cities
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GF Human ecology. Anthropogeography
H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
Date Deposited: 11 May 2015 14:28
Last Modified: 07 Jan 2024 08:48

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