Movement Methodologies and Transforming Urban Space

  • Jennifer L. Martinez
Part of the Marxism and Education book series (MAED)


This chapter raises an example of how popular education is used by movements to construct collective power and to transform their environment. The chapter examines the popular education methodology used by the Venezuelan movement Comites de Tierra Urbana (CTU, Urban Land Committees)2 and argues that this is a practice that has helped the movement to produce what Henri Lefebvre (1991) called “lived space.” Though at times the CTU movement has struggled to preserve its national unity and force, the strength of the movement is premised on differences within and between barrios (shantytowns). Such a mode of organization is somewhat unique in Venezuelan history and signals the construction of new urban social relations in the country. In this chapter I argue that the production of collective lived space, a term that will be defined through the discussion, and the movement’s capacity to shape a national urban agenda can be attributed, at least in part, to the popular education methodology that the CTUs have adopted. The methodology has over time expanded the movement’s understanding of urban power relations and the manner in which those power relations must be reworked across urban space—not just in the barrio—in order to transform the city.


Personal Interview Land Tenancy Urban Space Popular Education Popular Movement 
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© Sara C. Motta and Mike Cole 2013

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  • Jennifer L. Martinez

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