Antonis Vradis

Antonis Vradis is a PhD Candidate at the London School of Economics and a member of the Occupied London collective

The Right against the City

“Reclaim our cities”. “Self-organise”. “Take neighbourhood action”. Consider these slogans for a moment. Sound familiar? Indeed they should, echoing as they do a body of scholarship (e.g. Amin & Thrift, 2005; Butler, 2012; Chatterton, 2010; Dikeç, 2001; Harvey, 2003; Leontidou, 2006, 2010; Marcuse, 2009; Mayer, 2009; Simone, 2005) stemming from Henri Lefebvre’s idea of the Right to the City (Lefebvre, 1996; henceforth RttC). Despite this common origin, interpretations of the Lefebvrian “right” have been most diverse; perhaps his own often-times abstract writing has inadvertently caused this scholarship to reach outside the confines of his own political allegiance and thought: ten years ago, Mark Purcell (2002) protested that the original RttC notion was more radical than his own concurrent literature would make it appear. But today, a reformist interpretation of Lefebvre might be the least of the worries we are faced with here, on the south-eastern shore of the Mediterranean that is the Greek territory.

Terminating the spatial contract: A commentary on Greece

A very unusual thing happened on February 12th in Athens: the Greek capital city went up in flames. Now, even the casual follower of events in the country might spot something peculiar in this sentence — not with the event described, but with the statement. Is that...