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State Power, Civic Participation and the Urban Frontier: The Politics of the Commons in Karachi

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Abstract:  A martial state's neoliberal policies opened the nation's frontiers to new forms of globalization. This article investigates the political process that undergirded the military and global capital's sequestration of common land in Karachi and the concomitant contestation by a key civil society organization. Using Foucault's conception of sovereignty and government as an assemblage of authority and strategies of rationalization, this paper analyses the role of state and non‐state actors and changing power configurations in a conflict that surrounded the enclosure of a common and its transformation into a securitized zone of consumption in Karachi's Civil Lines. The conflict highlights the nature of the politics of space and citizenship in Pakistan's primary metropolis.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Social Sciences, Institute of Business Administration (IBA), Karachi, Pakistan;

Publication date: 2012-06-01

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