Right to the city
The right to the city is an idea and a slogan that was first proposed by Henri Lefebvre in his 1968 book Le Droit à la ville. Lefebvre summaries the ideas as a "demand...[for] a transformed and renewed access to urban life". David Harvey described it as follows:
The right to the city is far more than the individual liberty to access urban resources: it is a right to change ourselves by changing the city. It is, moreover, a common rather than an individual right since this transformation inevitably depends upon the exercise of a collective power to reshape the processes of urbanization. The freedom to make and remake our cities and ourselves is, I want to argue, one of the most precious yet most neglected of our human rights.
It has been suggested that the phrase has taken on a variety of meanings and Marcelo Lopes de Souza has argued that as the right to the city has become "fashionable these days", "[t]he price of this has often been the trivialisation and corruption of Lefebvre's concept" and called for fidelity to the original radical meaning of the idea.
A number of popular movements, such as the shack dwellers' movement Abahlali baseMjondolo in South Africa, the Right to the City Alliance in the United States of America, Recht auf Stadt, a network of squatters, tennants and artists in Hamburg, and various movements in Asia and Latin America, have incorporated the idea of the right to the city into their struggles.
- Mark Purcell, Excavating Lefebvre: The right to the city and its urban politics of the inhabitant, GeoJournal 58: 99–108, 2002
- “Right to the City” as a response to the crisis: “Convergence” or divergence of urban social movements?, Knut Unger, Reclaiming Spaces
- Henri Lefebvre, Writings on Cities, p. 158
- Kafui Attoh, What Kind of right is the right to the city "Progress in Human Geography"
- David Harvey (2008). "The Right to the City". New Left Review 53. pp. 23–40.
- From basic needs towards socio-spatial transformation: coming to grips with the 'Right to the City' for the urban poor in South Africa, by Tristan Gorgens, Mirjam van Donk, The Isandla Institute, 2011
- Marcelo Lopes de Souza, Which Right to Which City?, Interface, Volume 2 (1): 315 – 333 (May 2010)
- Abahlali baseMjondolo Campaigns and Statements on The Right to the City
- The Right to the City Alliance: Time to Democratize Urban Governance, by Jackie Leavitt, Tony Roshan Samara and Marnie Brady, Progressive Planning, Fall 2009
- Congress Theses on The Right to the City
- Margit Mayer, 'The Right to the City in Urban Social Movements' in Cities for People Not for Profit: Critical Urban Theory & the Right to the City, edited by Neil Brenner, Peter Marcuse & Margit Mayer, Routledge, New York, 2012
- "Implementing the Right to the City in Brazil" Sustainable Cities Collective, 2011
- World Charter for the Right to the City (PDF)
- World Charter for the Right to the City (HTML)
- Proposal for a Charter for Women's Right to the City
- Proposals and Experiencies towards the Right to the City, Ana Sugranyes and Charlotte Mathivet (editors) 03-16-2010