The Everyday Life of Urban Inequality explores how steadily increasing inequality and the spectacular pace of urbanization frame everyday life for city residents around the world. With case studies from five continents, this volume explores what it means to live within cities marked by entrenched inequalities, situating daily life at the intersection between global processes and local histories. Drawing from ethnographic research, scholars in varied social science disciplines examine the reproduction of poverty and stratification, the creation of political and social marginality, and the destruction—and resilience—of communities. Authors highlight how inequalities are experienced concretely and within daily life. The treatment of caddies at an elite golf course in Mexico City, the early morning routines of a woman running a food stall in Kuala Lumpur, the debates over voting in Cape Town’s periphery, the frustration of resettled residents with state policies in Casablanca, or the struggles of migrants to locate secure housing in Santiago all offer insights into the many ways in which inequalities are produced. In each chapter, everyday life is presented in vivid detail, noting the power of tradition, the tools of memory, and the impact of belonging as individuals and communities interact with centralized processes of policy and capital. By focusing on situated experiences of displacement, belonging, and difference, this volume demonstrates the power of multi-disciplinary ethnographic research to illustrate the many ways urban inequalities take shape, combine, and are perpetuated.
A comprehensive compilation of ethnographic studies carried out in cities around the Global South, this book offers a brilliant insight into how excluded populations make sense, experience, and struggle social inequality in an era of planetary urbanization. Covering a wide range of topics like gentrification, urban informality, citizenship participation, place making, and migration, The Everyday Life of Urban Inequality helps us understand the diversity of ways in which urban residents deal creatively with contemporary forms of exclusion while making the city. A must-read for anyone interested in reflecting anthropologically on the relationship between urban space and everyday life.