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Title: Liveability and urban architectures : Mol(ecul)ar biopower and the 'becoming lively' of sustainable communities
Authors: Kraftl, Peter
First Published: 20-Mar-2014
Publisher: PION
Citation: Environment and Planning D : Society and Space, 2014, 32 (2), pp. 274-292
Abstract: Contemporary analyses of biopolitics and the governance of 'life itself' have concentrated on molecular processes in domains such as medicine and neuroscience. In this paper, I turn an analytical lens on urban architectures, with a focus upon a particular programme of large-scale housebuilding in the UK: the Sustainable Communities agenda. I argue first that Sustainable Communities constitutes a resonant but qualitatively different attempt to plan for and govern life itself, particularly encapsulated by the term 'liveability'. Significantly, according to policy and technical documentation, Sustainable Communities appears to address the future at both molar and molecular levels, and through a focus on obduracy in ordinary, banal, everyday spaces (rather than in exceptional or border architectures). My analysis is, however, interwoven with attention to the 'becoming lively' of urban architectures. Drawing on a large, ethnographic research project, this paper offers three navigational aids to understanding how professionalised deployments of 'liveability' become co-opted into, resisted by, or creatively reinterpreted through, practices of inhabitation by residents of sustainable communities.
DOI Link: 10.1068/d21012
ISSN: 0263-7758
eISSN: 1472-3433
Version: Post-print
Status: Peer-reviewed
Type: Journal Article
Rights: Copyright © 2014, PION. Deposited with reference to the publisher’s archiving policy available on the SHERPA/RoMEO website.
Appears in Collections:Published Articles, Dept. of Geography

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