Women's lives and the making of the city: Experiences from 'north' and 'south' of Europe

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Women's lives and the making of the city: Experiences from 'north' and 'south' of Europe (EN)

Simonsen, K (EN)
Vaiou, D (EN)

N/A (EN)

In mainstream debates on 'the urban question', both at the peak period of the 'new urban theory' in the 1970s and in the more recent. analyses of urban restructuring, certain biases can be observed along the following two lines of argument. First, there is a deprioritization of the social practices and social lives of urban citizens as relevant dimensions in urban development. Second, the dominant themes, pertaining to be gender-neutral, are nonetheless based on the value of the adult male's activities and experiences of urban development. In this paper, we begin our enquiries with women's lives and women's experiences and forward an approach that sees urban space as both peopled and gendered. An emphasis on everyday practices and experiences leads us to a methodological approach which proceeds through different levels of abstraction - from descriptions of women's lives, through empirical analysis of the lives of groups of women, towards the development of conceptual dimensions by the help of which urban development and women's roles in the making of the city can be approached and interpreted. In order to think through these levels and develop (a first approximation of) relevant conceptual categories, we draw from two historically and geographically different contexts of urban development: women's lives from parts of the cities of Copenhagen and Athens. This way of proceeding from concrete experiences to more abstract concepts and taking gender seriously, we would argue, reshuffles priorities and leads to a different understanding of urban structure and urban development. (EN)



Εθνικό Μετσόβιο Πολυτεχνείο (EL)
National Technical University of Athens (EN)

International Journal of Urban and Regional Research (EN)



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