The Jewish-Arab City
Spatio-politics in a mixed community
By Haim Yacobi
Routledge – 2009 – 160 pages
Mixed city is a term widely used in Israel to describe areas occupied by both Jewish and Arab communities. In a critical examination of such cities, the author shows how a clear spatial and mental division exists between Arabs and Jews in Israel, and how the occurrence of such communities is both exceptional and involuntary.
Looking at Jewish-Arab relations in Israel in the context of the built environment, it is argued that there are complex links between socio-political relations and the production of contested urban space. The case study of one particular Jewish-Arab "mixed city", the city of Lod, is used as the platform for wider theoretical discussion and political analysis. This city has great significance in the present global context, as more and more cities are becoming polarized, ghettoized, and fragmented in surprisingly similar ways. This book examines the visible planning apparatuses and the "hidden" mechanisms of social, political, and cultural control involved in these processes.
Focusing on the spatialities of power, this book brings to the fore a critical discussion of the urban processes that shape Jewish-Arab "mixed cities" in Israel, and will be of interest to students and scholars of Urban Studies, Middle East Studies and Politics in general.
Introduction 1. Orientalism, Modernity and Urban Design in Mandatory Lydda 2. From al-Ludd to Lod 3. Architecture and the Struggle over Geography 4. Territorialization and the City's Geopolitics of Fear 5. Agents, Enemies, and the Privatization of Space 6. Walking, Inhabiting, Narrating. Conclusion
Haim Yacobi is an architect and lecturer at the Department of Politics and Government at Ben-Gurion University. His main research interests are the production of urban space, social justice, the politics of identity, migration, globalization and urban planning.