Dispossession and Dishonour in the Polarized Metropolis: Reactions and Recommendations

  • Loïc WacquantEmail author


I am thankful to the participants of the Sheffield conference “Rethinking Urban Inequality, with Loïc Wacquant” and to the contributors to the present volume for extending, revising, and questioning my work on polarization and marginality in the city. In this response, I spotlight points of agreement and zones of divergence. I stress in turn the need to clearly distinguish folk from analytic concepts; the fruitfulness of bringing gender, family, and social work into the picture of the urban precariat; the epistemic priority of the macro-structural over the micro-phenomenological level of analysis; the centrality of formal and informal housing in determining the life chances of the dispossessed; the lattice of street-level strategies of social agents embedded in objective webs of relations; and the anatomy and workings of the “delegated penal state.”


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of SociologyUniversity of California, BerkeleyBerkeleyUSA

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