Displacing Blackness: Planning, Power, and Race in Twentieth-Century Halifax
Modern urban planning has long promised to improve the quality of human life. But how is human life defined? Displacing Blackness develops a unique critique of urban planning by focusing, not on its subservience to economic or political elites, but on its efforts to improve people’s lives.
While focused on twentieth-century Halifax, Displacing Blackness develops broad insights about the possibilities and limitations of modern planning. Drawing connections between the history of planning and emerging scholarship in Black Studies, Ted Rutland positions anti-blackness at the heart of contemporary city-making. Moving through a series of important planning initiatives, from a social housing project concerned with the moral and physical health of working-class residents to a sustainability-focused regional plan, Displacing Blackness shows how race – specifically blackness – has defined the boundaries of the human being and guided urban planning, with grave consequences for the city’s Black residents.
- Division: Scholarly Publishing
- World Rights
- Page Count: 400 pages
- Dimensions: 6.0in x 1.3in x 9.0in
"Displacing Blackness: Power, Planning, and Race in Twentieth-Century Halifax sheds light on the racist conceptions behind urban planning projects in Canada, and how they’ve defined what constitutes a viable life, and what does not. This book analyzes the connections between urban planning and blackness, particularly in Halifax, Nova Scotia in the twentieth century. In his critique, Rutland shows that throughout history, projects have consistently benefitted white people, while having serious consequences to the city’s Black residents, despite urban planning promising to improve citizens’ lives."
Cristina Sanza, Faculty of Arts and Science, Concordia University
Author InformationTed Rutland is an associate professor in the Department of Geography, Planning, and Environment at Concordia University.
Table of contents
List of Figures
- "Higher Living through Environment": The Reformers, the Slums, and the Emergence of Modern Urban Planning
- Planning the Town White: Comprehensive Planning, Scientific Racism, and the Destruction of Africville
- A Calibrated Rush for Progress: Urban Renewal, Anti-Blackness, and the Diverse Effects of a Totalizing Planning Project
- "A Place to Enjoy Oneself": Anti-Renewal Activism, Citizen Involvement, and the Limits of Urban Amenity
- Planning by Other Means: The Black United Front and the Struggle for Self-Determination
- Making Space for Homo economicus: Neoliberalism, Regional Planning, and the Boundaries of Economic Life
Subjects and Courses