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Fear Disarmed

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AbstractFear is seen to be one of the defining political emotions of late modernity. Sociologists, artists, philosophers, activists, and pundits see fear everywhere. If fear has become a way of life, the contemporary city is seen to be one of its most prominent and productive social laboratories. However, while the growing fear scholarship argues that is such a politically significant emotion, the way it is studied often both naturalizes and exteriorizes fear from politics. As a result, fear’s antagonistic status as both a social relation and an arena of political action is submerged. In this article I raise the productive role of social protest and propose a different approach to thinking about, and acting in, the city of fear.

Affiliations: 1: Simon Fraser


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1. Graham Stephen Graham S. "“Introduction: Cities, warfare, and states of emergency”" Cities, War and Terrorism: Towards an Urban Geopolitics 2004 Malden, MA Blackwell 1 25
2. Harvey David "“The New Imperialism: On Spatio-Temporal Fixes and Accumulation by Dispossession”" 2003 Retrieved March 4, 2008 (
3. Jeffries Fiona "“Organizing on the ‘Factory on Wheels’: The Bus Riders Union and Anti-Racist Feminism for the Twenty-First Century”" Canadian Woman Studies 2007 Vol 25 3,4 127 132 (Special Issue on Feminist Activism)
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6. Lechner Norbert Corradi Juan , et al "“Some People Die of Fear: Fear as a Political Problem”" Fear at the Edge: State Terror and Resistance in Latin America 1992 Berkeley, Los Angeles, and Oxford University of California Press
7. Neocleous Mark Critique of Security 2008 Kingston ON and Montreal, PQ Mc-Gill-Queens University Press
8. Wallerstein I. "“The Anatomy of Fear”" Commentary 2010 Vol 281 1 2
9. World Social Summit Fear in the Mega Cities: Research Synthesis Report 2008 Rome Fondazione Roma
10. Zizek S. Violence 2008 New York Picador

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