Browse

You are looking at 1 - 10 of 1,138 items for :

  • Urban Studies x
Clear All

This chapter develops a study of the municipality of Chalatenango. The type of local order in Chalatenango is defined as society-led, that is, an order shaped by an ecology of governance in which societal actors play a crucial role as public goods providers and violence regulators. The analysis shows that community organization and translocal dynamics are crucial to explaining violence containment. Local communities have managed to control the levels of lethal violence and deter criminal actors amid a national context characterized by state neglect and chronic violence. Community organization is not territorially bound but extends across transnational networks. Migrants are a source of livelihoods for the local population; they also contribute to providing public goods and participate in local forms of organization. Transnational networks have forged a migration corridor that enables immigration to the United States. In doing this, outmigration has worked as a safety valve that relieves social tensions and reduces grievances. Additionally, community organization informally contributes to the capacity of the local state to perform its functions, thereby shaping cooperative state–society relations.

Restricted access

This chapter recapitulates the main elements of the analytical approach, key findings and the integral aspects of the empirical analysis. It discusses the findings and examines the trajectories of governance of the set of four cities from a cross-case perspective, taking the scope of the multifaceted transitions induced by the third wave of democratization in Latin America as a point of reference. Last, the chapter elaborates on empirical policy implications, emphasizing the need to develop a more comprehensive approach to address urban violence in Latin America, including a much-improved understanding of the conditions and processes enabling the entrenchment of criminal groups in local communities and nurturing illegal economies, on the one hand, and ensuring the endurance of state violence, on the other. Such a perspective entails the recognition of the diversity of cities in the region. In this regard, the chapter foregrounds the characteristics of peripheral cities and their implications for a richer understanding of the dynamics of urban violence and peace.

Restricted access

This introduction explains the rationale of the book and presents an overview of the key concepts and arguments informing the empirical analysis. It discusses the relevance of approaching violence in peripheral cities through an order-centred perspective. Likewise, the chapter introduces the tenets of the research design and empirical approach. Particularly, the constitutive elements of the ‘comparative case-study approach’ (CSS) and the impact of ethics, positionality and reflexivity in the research process and analysis. The chapter also positions the book’s analytical and empirical contributions in relation to the existing scholarship and debate on urban violence in Latin America. The chapter concludes with a description of the book’s structure and chapters.

Restricted access

This chapter focuses on the study of the emergence and configuration of a violent order in Pereira and its implications for local governance. The chapter explains how these developments are the result of a sequence encompassing the dislodging and rearticulation of the ecology of governance and local order. This sequence is formed by the intersection of three key processes. First, the undermining of the licit economic structure, particularly the coffee economy, and market-oriented reforms as well as the related reconfiguration of the ecology of governance. Second, transformations of both the illegal drugs market and the structure of organized crime in Colombia. Third, the effects of the civil war. These processes interacted against the backdrop of a divided city in which violence was already present, playing a central role in shaping the relationship between the state and the urban poor. Hence, rather than resulting from a collapse of Pereira’s local order, violence strengthened upon the readjustment of a set of networks and societal relations as well as ideational and material conditions. Violence has, likewise, had a very productive role in the configuration of the local order, notably as a force propelling the city’s adjustment to the demands of global markets.

Restricted access

This chapter briefly introduces the main characteristics of Colombia’s and El Salvador’s national contexts, emphasizing the complex relationship between politics and violence from a historical perspective, and the impact of the latter on urbanization processes. It also examines the trends in peripheral cities. The chapter is structured around three assumptions: first, Colombia and El Salvador are political regimes in which elements of formal democracy co-exist with authoritarian institutions and violence; second, in both cases, urbanization processes are closely intertwined with the dynamics of violence experienced by these countries; and third, while violence has affected peripheral cities in both there is significant variation between cases and across time. The analytical framework developed here serves as the basis for the case studies examined in subsequent chapters. Considering the intricacies of the relationship between order and violence, the contrasts in quantitative trends across cases hint at the existence of violent orders in some cities but not in others. This raises the crucial question of why the occurrence of violence varies across cities – or, more specifically, why and how some have become loci of violent orders while others have not.

Restricted access

Within the parameters of this book, Sonsonate City constitutes a typical case, illustrating the configuration of a violent order based on a trajectory in which persistent state-sponsored violence, state neglect, socioeconomic exclusion, economic stagnation and a frayed social fabric have converged. Besides that, Sonsonate exemplifies also the complex interaction between repertoires and levels of violence within the framework of violent orders and the problem of reducing the phenomenon merely to homicide. Despite the significant reduction in the latter over time, non-lethal forms of violence remain endemic. This chapter traces the emergence of a violent order in Sonsonate City and the effects on governance, local citizenship and state–society relations. Likewise, it examines the drivers of lethal violence and the implications thereof for the local order. The trajectory of governance and violence in Sonsonate challenge state-centric approaches to urban forms of the latter, demonstrating the crucial relevance of challenging assumptions on stateness – as the necessary starting point in any related analysis. Violence is not the outcome of state absence but rather of the specific characteristics of state formation and presence in El Salvador.

Restricted access
Tracing the Entanglements of Order and Violence in Peripheral Cities of Latin America

Trajectories of Governance studies the complex dynamics of order-making, violence and governance in peripheral cities in Latin America from a comparative, historical, and multi-scalar approach.

This book aims to discover more about the drivers, contexts, and uneven levels of violence through the case studies of Chalatenango and Sonsonate in El Salvador and Pereira and Tunja in Colombia.

Based on a multidisciplinary analytical framework, Trajectories of Governance explains why and how some peripheral cities have become the locus of violent orders, whereas others have managed to control violence, and to examine the role of violence in the workings of local governance.

Restricted access

Drawing on the combination of different strands of the literature on processual and political sociology with insights stemming from conflict and peace research, this chapter develops a comprehensive framework to address the relationship between local order and violence. Such a framework provides a heuristic for studying the commonalities and differences in the nexus between order and violence across cases and approaching their transformation considering spatiotemporal entanglements. Governance serves to articulate the link between order and violence. The chapter develops this articulation through the crucible of ecologies of governance, citizenship agendas and trajectories of governance. After developing the conceptual structure, the chapter lays out a typology of local orders. It delves here into definitions of ‘violent order’ and ‘grey-zone governance’, as well as into the characterization of state- and society-led orders. The established framework and typology set the basis for the empirical analysis developed in the subsequent chapters, in which within-case studies depict the different types of local order outlined in the typology and elaborate on the role of violence in the workings of governance and order-making.

Restricted access

Tunja’s trajectory is the one that most closely resembles the classical Weberian state-centric ideal type among the set of diverse cases. This chapter traces the underpinnings of the local order in Tunja and argues that the trajectory and dynamics of violence witnessed in this city result from three processes. First, the nature of state formation and the seminal ecology of governance in this region. Second, Tunja experienced a process of illiberal peace during and at the end of ‘La Violencia’. Third, Tunja occupies a peripheral position within networks of capital (legal and illegal), criminal networks and human mobility flows. The corollary of these processes is a trajectory of governance etched by the preponderance of statutory institutions and state control over violence. Against this backdrop, the changes that Colombia has experienced over the last four decades did not substantially alter the ecology of governance but, instead, reinforced the tenets of the previous pathway while providing new avenues for enhancing local democracy. In a nutshell, Tunja has followed a trajectory that predominantly experienced gradual change and the absence of armed actors challenging the state’s power.

Restricted access

When looking through the settler colonial framework, this chapter demonstrates how the building and establishment of exclusive White communities is maintained and reinforced. One way to understand how White communities are maintained is to focus on the narratives that White people use to make sense of their residential histories, tied to ideas about private property. Respondents shared histories about why they decided to move, live, and stay in Jamaica Plain. Their histories mainly highlighted their childhood neighbourhoods projected onto Jamaica Plain, which is vital to their sense of self, identity, and relationship to Jamaica Plain. This chapter shows that Whiteness is perpetually reproduced by those who fit into the narrow idea of community. Respondents often looked inward to what they meant by “community,” who they included, and what community means.

Restricted access