John Wiley & Sons Housing in the Margins Cover Critical shortages of affordable housing force people into housing precarity across the globe. Housi.. Product #: 978-1-119-54091-5 Regular price: $69.07 $69.07 Auf Lager

Housing in the Margins

Negotiating Urban Formalities in Berlin's Allotment Gardens

Hilbrandt, Hanna

Studies in Urban and Social Change


1. Auflage Mai 2021
192 Seiten, Hardcover
Wiley & Sons Ltd

ISBN: 978-1-119-54091-5
John Wiley & Sons


Critical shortages of affordable housing force people into housing precarity across the globe. Housing in the Margins is an exploration of unruly housing practices and their regulation in the context of the German housing crisis. Through ethnographic research on the ways in which Berliners dwell in allotment gardens (despite a law that prohibits housing at these sites) it illustrates how these gardeners negotiate the possibilities of residency with the local bureaucracy, gardening associations and amongst themselves. This analysis highlights the contested terrain of enacting regulations and the exclusions that these negotiations entail. Building on postcolonial urbanism, anthropology of the state and critical legal geography, the book draws attention to the power of negotiations in the governance of urban space, thereby outlining how the state is constructed and performed in the everyday.

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Housing in the Margins offers a theoretically informed and empirically detailed exploration of unruly housing practices and their governance at the periphery of Berlin.
* An original empirical contribution to understanding housing precarity in the context of the German housing crisis
* A novel approach to theorizing the nexus of informality and the state in ways that bridge analytical divides between debates about Northern and Southern states
* An innovative account of urban development in Berlin that contributes to the limited discussions of urban informality in Euro-American cities
* A theoretical understanding of the ways in which negotiations and transgressions are embedded in the making of urban order
* A historically informed narrative of the development of allotment gardens in Berlin with a particular focus on housing practices at these sites

List of Illustrations vi

Series Editors' Preface vii

Acknowledgements viii

1. Introduction: Housing in the Entanglements of Formality, Informality, and the State 1

2. Negotiating Formalities: Informality and the Everyday State 15

3. Footnotes on the History of Housing: Allotment Dwelling in Berlin, 1871-2019 31

4. Housing in the Margins: Halfway Between Exclusion and Homeownership 54

5. The Colony and the Turf: Planning and the Politics of Land Use Change 76

6. Constellations of Consent: Navigating the Politics of Regulatory Enforcement 97

7. Working the Legal Threshold: Regulation, Translation, and Boundary Work 116

8. Conclusion: The "Gallic Village" 134

Glossary of German Terms 144

References 146

Index 173
'Housing in the Margins is a journey into normal-yet-transgressive living spaces on the periphery of Berlin. Hilbrandt powerfully rethinks statehood as the ordinary enactment of negotiation, shattering along the way the tired but all-too-persistent division between the global "North and South."'
Julie-Anne Boudreau, Institut national de la recherche scientifique and Instituto de Geografía UNAM

'This is a truly remarkable book. It incorporates a rich discussion of the lived experience of informal housing in Berlin's allotment gardens. But, in doing so, it also requires us to rethink how urban space is negotiated from below as well as above.'
Allan Cochrane, Emeritus Professor of Urban Studies, The Open University, UK

'Hanna Hilbrandt's study generates new openings for urban studies to think urban informality, negotiated governance, and housing across the global north and south. Firmly rooted in Berlin's distinctive history, this is a very welcome contribution to theorising the urban globally.'
Jennifer Robinson, Professor of Geography, University College London, U
Hanna Hilbrandt is Assistant Professor of Social and Cultural Geography at the University of Zurich. Her research explores marginality and exclusion in housing and urban development as well as socio-spatial inequalities in the context of global economic restructuring. Focusing predominantly on Mexico City and Berlin, her work pays close attention to the everyday politics of city-making and the structural constraints in which such practises are inscribed.