This textbook of essays by leading critical urbanists is a compelling introduction to an important field of study; it interrogates contemporary conflicts and contradictions inherent in the social experience of living in cities that are undergoing neoliberal restructuring, and grapples with profound questions and challenging policy considerations about diversity, equity, and justice. A stimulant to debate in any undergraduate urban studies classroom, this book will inspire a new generation of urban social scholars.

Cities, Nature and Sustainability

Cities, Nature and Sustainability

Cities, Nature and Sustainability
Ian R. CookErik Swyngedouw


This chapter considers the nexus between cities, nature and sustainability. At first glance, the relationship between cities and the natural environment may sound like a peculiar nexus to focus on. Cities have long been viewed as places where nature ends and where urbanism begins, a perspective still prevalent today in many urban policy practices. Yet, cities are inhabited by a magnificent variety of flora and fauna, are built out of natural resources, produce vast quantities of pollution and effluents, contain mesmerising conduits for all manner of resource and other environmental flows, and have become central nodes in the commodification of nature (Heynen et al., 2006b; Hinchcliffe and Whatmore, 2006). What is more, under the ...

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