By Edward W. Soja
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Extra resources for Seeking Spatial Justice
Stated another way, our spatiality, sociality, and historicality are mutually constitutive, with no one inherently privileged a priori. Here too there has been a great imbalance in our intellectual traditions. Much greater emphasis continues to be given to how social processes shape spatial form as opposed to the reverse relation, how spatiality and spatial processes shape social relations of all kinds, from the immediacy of interpersonal interaction to relations of class and social stratification to long-term patterns of societal development.
Seeking spatial justice was not explicitly referred to in mobilizing the Paris uprisings or organizing grassroots eﬀorts in 2005, nor was there a conscious struggle over le droit à la ville as occurred in 1968. Although achieving spatial justice was not the primary motivating force, interpreting what happened through a critical spatial perspective and its wide-ranging geographical imagination adds significant insight and understanding to conventional commentaries. The specific case also opens up a wider exploration of other empirical expressions of the multiscalar search for spatial justice.
What a just space looks like is necessarily kept open, but must be rooted in the active negotiation of multiple publics, in search of productive ways to build solidarities across diﬀerence. This space—both process and product—is by definition public in the broadest sense; the opportunity to participate in inscribing its meaning is accessible to all. . Justice is therefore not abstract, and not solely something “handed down” or doled out by the state, it is rather a shared responsibility of engaged actors in the socio-spatial systems they inhabit and (re)produce.