Editorial on ‘Activist*Scholarship’

Keywords: urban activism, displacement, evictions, Covid-19, solidarity

Following a conference on urban activism in 2019 and an article on activist*scholarship published in the last issue of this journal, we present here a reflection on how the recent convergence of housing activism and urban scholarship can contribute to articulate a new form of producing knowledge for action. The consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic exacerbated many of the elements that were already stimulating outburst of rebellion throughout the world; the role of activist*scholars may be crucial to connect and convey local episodes into a global view, and way, for change.


Stefano Portelli is a cultural anthropologist engaged in the defense of self-built and self-managed peripheral neighborhoods from the threat of eviction and displacement. He is currently a Marie-Curie fellow at the University of Leicester’s Department of Geography, and an affiliate with Harvard’s Department of Anthropology. He is working on the effects of gentrification and displacement on folk religion in the city of Casablanca.

Aylin Y. Tschoepe is an anthropologist, urbanist, and architect. Aylin’s transdisciplinary work is centered around inclusionary urban practices, entanglements of human and non-human actors and their body-spatial relations, and communities that negotiate belonging to the city over collaboratively produced artifacts. Committed to feminist pedagogy, Aylin takes a situated and inquiry-based approach, and strives to deconstruct hierarchies when it comes to knowledge in the study and practice of the urban.

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