SOAS University of London

Centre for Cultural, Literary and Postcolonial Studies (CCLPS)

"Walls, Barricades, Borders, Gates: Political Negligence and the Twenty-First Century City"


Date: 20 September 2014Time: 9:30 AM

Finishes: 20 September 2014Time: 7:00 PM

Venue: Brunei Gallery Room: B111

Type of Event: Workshop

 Citizen Academia Network (CAN) Workshop          

Organisers: Dr. Rita Sakr and Professor Caroline Rooney (University of Kent)
                Dr. Karima Laachir (SOAS Centre for Cultural, Literary and        
                                           Postcolonial Studies)

Conference Rationale

This interdisciplinary workshop will bring together experts in the study of the cultural, political, historical, and social dynamics of the twenty-first century urban environment, especially in the MENA region and Europe. It will draw on the participants’ expertise regarding the state of the ‘citizen’ in the politically negligent state and the outlook for activist, resistant practices of border-transgressing citizenship as well as community-led campaigns for socio-economic empowerment and inclusivity. In this respect, the workshop will examine the impact of territorial markers and borders on the construction and destruction of urban communities and the implications of these continued transformations for security discourses and practices. Some of the questions that can be raised in this context include:

In the multicultural, multi-faith city, who is the Citizen?

In the city of settlements, refugee centres, and prisons, what defines Security?

In the city of multiple flags, what is the significance of a neighbourhood?

In the city of gated communities and council estates, where is the Playground?

In the city of police stations and corporate buildings, what is Civil Disorder?

In the city of graffiti-sprayed and bullet-ridden walls, what is Resistance?

In the city of police checkpoints and protest barricades, what is Street Life?

In the city of tear gas and suicide bombs, what is Political Violence?

Between the suburb and the slum, where is the City?

…and among the various challenges to sustainable urban life, how can community leaders, architects, urban planners, activists, artists, and others contribute to countering political negligence with urban vigilance and creativity?

To download a full programme, click the link on the top right of the page.

For registration: Please contact Dr. Rita Sakr  (
Registration Fee: Full Fee £20.00 (including lunch and tea/coffees); Students’ and Discount Fee: £10.00

Organiser: Karima Laachir, Rita Sakr, Caroline Ronney

Contact email:

Sponsor: Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), and Global Uncertainties



Global Uncertainties Logo