Andy Merrifield (born 1960) is a Marxist urban theorist.
He was born in Liverpool, UK and attended Quarry Bank School until 1976. He left school at 16 and did office jobs and travelled. He graduated in geography, philosophy and sociology from Liverpool Polytechnic in the mid-1980s. Merrifield received his PhD in geography from Oxford University in 1993, supervised by David Harvey.
Merrifield spent most of his early career teaching geography at the University of Southampton and King's College London, before moving to Clark University, USA in 2000. He was denied tenure in 2003, on grounds of collegiality, having chosen to live 178 miles away in Manhattan. He moved with his partner to Lavoûte-Chilhac, south of Clermont-Ferrand in the Auvergne in France as an "independent scholar".
He returned to the academic system in 2011. In 2011-12 he was a Leverhulme Fellow at the University of Manchester. He is currently Supernumerary Fellow in Human Geography at Murray Edwards College, University of Cambridge
Merrifield is a prolific writer, and was a leading proponent of the idea of The Right to the City. In his latest work he supports the 'politics of the encounter' rather than the 'right' to urban space. He draws heavily on the work of Henri Lefebvre and his theories.
A departure was his 2008 book, The Wisdom of Donkeys, completed after his departure from academia in the US. It offers insights into a slowing of life and having time for reflection, while undertaking a journey on foot with a donkey through France's Auvergne region.
Awards and honors
- The New Urban Question (Pluto Press, 2014)
- The Politics of the Encounter: Urban Theory and Protest under Planetary Urbanization. (University of Georgia Press, 2013)
- John Berger (Reaktion Books, 2012)
- Magical Marxism: Subversive Politics and the Imagination (Pluto Press, 2011)
- The Wisdom of Donkeys: Finding Tranquility in a Chaotic World (Bloomsbury, 2008) (Die Weisheit der Esel Ruhe finden in einer chaotischen Welt. München Nymphenburger 2009; L'âne de Schubert. Actes Sud, 2008)
- Henri Lefebvre: A Critical Introduction (Routledge, 2006)
- Guy Debord (Reaktion Books, 2005)(Chinese, University of Beijing Press, 2011)
- Dialectical Urbanism (2002)
- Metromarxism: A Marxist Tale of the City (2002) (Turkish, Phoenix Yayinevi, 2012)
- The Urbanization of Injustice (ed. with Erik Swyngedouw, NYU Press, 1997)
- http://www.ijurr.org/SpringboardWebApp/userfiles/ijurr/file/Author%20meet%20critic%202013/Andy%20AmC%20updated.pdf Author meets critics, 2013
- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H9ypBjuQahA Discussion, University of Manchester, 2012
- Alison Flood (6 March 20). "New prize for radical writing announces shortlist". Retrieved May 2, 2012.
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