Dispatches Against Displecement
From the Global Economy to the Eviction Notice
Edited by Guadalupe Arreola, Alicia Schwartz,
James Tracy and Tom Wetzel
To be published by AK Press, 2009
In nearly every major U.S. city, the displacement epidemic is destroying communities and reshaping the urban landscape into zones of exclusion and elitism. An avalanche of eviction notices and redevelopment efforts fractures working class neighborhoods, particularly those of color. The causes lie far beyond bad landlords and poor public policies. Twenty-first century displacement is intricately tied to shifts in the global economy, where de-industrialized cities must continually re-invent themselves as high-end construction temporarily replaces the vanished factory, and forced migration and displacement intensifies.
Within this, politicians and policy makers also rely on displacement as a method of policing, thinning, and managing low-income people and the surplus population. Yet every action has its reaction, and people's organizations challenge and confront the real estate industry. Together, these campaigns call into question exactly who has the "right to the city" and suggest an alternative urban life rooted in economic and racial justice.
Dispatches Against Displacement examines the struggles for the city and asks how they might be combined, strengthened, and critically examined in order to forge an agenda for land-reform within the United States.
The book will have three main sections:
Articles in this section will clearly lay out the causes of displacement; and make links between this and other issues such as the global economy, prisons, class struggle, etc.
Dispatches From the Space Wars
Articles in this section will look at what organizations and individuals are doing to fight displacement in their own communities. It is intended that these pieces will: explore the tactics, strategies, successes and failures used in campaigns and identify parts currents of the campaigns which could contribute to an urban land-reform agenda.
Land and Liberation
What would it look like if the hundreds of disparate organizations and campaigns could coalesce around, and win urban land reform? What shape would the demands take? What changes would be made? Is it possible for any meaningful reform to occur under market-capitalism?
Style and Format
Accessible in tone, yet well-written. While the book will be academically sound, we want to make sure that it finds a readership in the neighborhoods it is written about.
Bring together book smarts and street smarts. We strongly encourage collaboratively written articles. Articles co-authored by activists who primarily do on-the-ground grassroots organizing and activists who primarily work in the academy will receive preference. Talk to people in the community you are writing about, quote them and respect their point of view.
Back-it up! If you say something is so, then give some facts establishing your point.
Please use Chicago Humanities style endnotes, not footnotes.
To submit: Please in Word format, as an attachment, to firstname.lastname@example.org by November 1, 2008. We are happy to review queries to determine if a proposal fits the scope of this book.