The Properties of Debt: Reciprocity, Precarity, and Social Obligation in Medellín (Las propiedades de la deuda: Reciprocidad, precariedad y obligación social en Medellín).
In Propiedad sobre la tierra en Colombia: Viejos y nuevos dilemas sobre la distribución (Property over Land in Colombia: Old and New Dilemmas about Distribution) (Helena Alviar García & Tatiana Alfonso Sierra eds.) (2021).
Posted: 23 Mar 2022 Last revised: 29 Apr 2022
Date Written: August 16, 2019
English Abstract: This chapter analyzes how citizen-state relations are articulated through notions of private and public debt around property. Drawing on empirical research in an informal settlement in the city of Medellín, I discuss the multiple forms of debt that undergird property relations on the city’s peripheries. I trace how these forms of debt feed local property economies, from real estate markets managed by armed actors to state programs to provide reparations and relocate the displaced. These forms of property-related debt shape understandings of the relationship between citizens and the state as well as state responsibility for compensating citizens for harms suffered as a result of the armed conflict.
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