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The racial and colonial dimensions of gentrification

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Abstract

In recent years, studies of gentrification have added a deeper political economic, political, and cultural understanding to this process by demonstrating how it can be understood as not only driven by the physical displacement of working-class residents but also by the political, cultural, and physical displacement of poor and working-class Black, Latinx, Asian, and Indigenous populations. In this study, I review these recent key works in urban sociology, geography, and urban history which examine the specifically racial and colonial dimensions of gentrification. These works provide invaluable insights to the political economic, political, and cultural dimensions of gentrification, but are still constrained by not developing a deeper historical analytics of the racial and colonial structures which shape gentrification. Because of this, the foundations of anti-Black and anti-Indigenous racism which make possible the commodification of space and devaluation and dispossession of people that gentrification requires, remain obscured. I argue the alternative frameworks of settler colonialism, internal colonialism, and coloniality—developed largely separate from urban sociology—can provide a sharper analysis to the study of gentrification by helping to more explicitly name and explain the racial and colonial structures, logics, and subjectivities which shape gentrification.

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APA

Kent-Stoll, P. (2020). The racial and colonial dimensions of gentrification. Sociology Compass, 14(12), 1–17. https://doi.org/10.1111/soc4.12838

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