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The metropolis and white modernity

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Alastair Bonnett


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Drawing largely on Latin and North American and British examples, the three sections of this article each provide a different illustration of the relationship between whiteness, modernity and the urban. The article, first, offers a critique of the lack of engagement with the issue of racialization apparent within some recent studies of urban westernization. This section proceeds to illustrate the association between whiteness, modernity and the urban with reference to Latin America. In the second section, I address narratives of the `dark city'. It is argued that these discourses reflect the zoning of non-whiteness and, at least in the case of Britain, have sustained a class-based, colour-coded imaginative geography of the city. Third and last, I return to the Americas to discuss the way the rural, non-whiteness and nature have been conflated and constructed in opposition to negative racialized portrayals of the city as an inauthentic and unnatural landscape.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Bonnett A

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Ethnicities

Year: 2002

Volume: 2

Issue: 3

Pages: 349-366

ISSN (print): 1468-7968

ISSN (electronic): 1741-2706

Publisher: Sage Publications Ltd.


DOI: 10.1177/14687968020020030401


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