Hegel's Hipsters: Claiming Ownership in the Contemporary City

(2017) Social & Legal Studies, doi: 10.1177/0964663917701304

UNSW Law Research Paper No. 17-79

28 Pages Posted: 17 Nov 2017 Last revised: 13 Jul 2018

See all articles by Amelia Thorpe

Amelia Thorpe

University of New South Wales (UNSW) - Faculty of Law

Date Written: 2017

Abstract

Property is both revered and reviled. Praised for its connections to autonomy, agency, power and community, property attracts scorching critiques for its implication in exclusion, inequality and injustice. This article provides a new perspective from which to examine this dual nature of property. Drawing on fieldwork in the US, Canada, New Zealand and Australia, property is examined in the context of citizen and community-led “do-it-yourself” interventions in the urban environment. Perhaps even more than in official planning processes, claims about ownership are central to these activities. Finding multiple forms of property at work in the city, and noting that legal title is often less important than more informal ownership, this article provides new insights into some of the oldest debates in property. Amongst echoes of Lockean labour-based theory, Hegelian personhood theory emerges as particularly helpful in explaining the intimate connections between property and identity, community and power in the city.

Keywords: Belonging, Community, DIY Urbanism, Identity, Legal Geography, Property Theory

Suggested Citation

Thorpe, Amelia, Hegel's Hipsters: Claiming Ownership in the Contemporary City (2017). (2017) Social & Legal Studies, doi: 10.1177/0964663917701304; UNSW Law Research Paper No. 17-79. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3071552 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3071552

Amelia Thorpe (Contact Author)

University of New South Wales (UNSW) - Faculty of Law ( email )

Kensington, New South Wales 2052
Australia

HOME PAGE: http://www.law.unsw.edu.au/profile/amelia-thorpe

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