European cities have increasingly highlighted diversity as a marker of their progressive status. A growing field of research argues that “super-diverse” neighborhoods exemplify a normalization of ethnic and racial differences as a positive facet of everyday life. However, contemporary manifestations of urban diversity cannot be disentangled easily from the European colonial legacy that underlies a series of racial and spatial imaginaries.
In this talk, Yasminah Beebeejaun argues that the claimed reconfiguration of European cities as sites of normative diversity obscures the ongoing epistemological framing of Europe as white. Turning specifically to British cities, Professor Beebeejaun illustrates how colonial racial narratives underpinned postwar urban planning and development and have had profound consequences for the racialization of urban space. Beebeejaun argues that the European planning discipline must engage in a much deeper reconning with its own colonial and racial history in order to reconceptualize what progressive urban diversity might look like.
Below you’ll find the audio recording (graphic coming soon) from “Whose diversity? Race, space, and planning” presented by Yasminah Beebeejaun on April 5th, 2023.
About the presenter
Yasminah Beebeejaun is a Professor of Urban Politics and Planning at the Bartlett School of Planning, University College London. Her work is concerned with feminist and anti-racist approaches to planning theory and practice. Her articles have been published in many journals including Environment and Planning C, Journal of Planning Education and Research, Planning Theory, Planning Theory and Practice, and Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers. She is co-editor of The Journal of Race, Ethnicity and the City.
About the series
Shareable is partnering with Tufts University on this special series hosted by Professor Julian Agyeman (Co-chair of Shareable’s Board) and Cities@Tufts. Initially designed for Tufts students, faculty, and alumni, the colloquium has been opened up to the public with this partnership with Shareable and the support from the Shift Foundation, Barr Foundation, and The Kresge Foundation.
Cities@Tufts Lectures explores the impact of urban planning on our communities and the opportunities to design for greater equity and justice.
Register to participate in future Cities@Tufts events here.