Méndez, M.L. (2018). Neighborhoods as arenas of conflict in the neoliberal city: Practices of boundary making between “us” and “them”. City and Community, 17(3): 737-753
This paper is concerned with processes of place making among middle class residents in Santiago de Chile, and focuses on the ways in which neighborhood groups seek to receive heritage status for their areas of residence, as a way to contest the demolition of houses in order to build high‐rise buildings. I focus on the tensions inherent in reconciling a critical view of neoliberal residential politics with a securing of their individual or family class position. I bring together debates and evidence about social and spatial boundary making with analysis of strategies of reproduction of class position. The paper focuses on intraclass symbolic boundaries in place making and the local politics and practices involved, by addressing the relationship of the middle classes to territory and their place in the contemporary city (Andreotti et al. 2014; Bacqué et al. 2015; Bridge et al. 2012; Brown‐Saracino 2009; Zukin 2010). I discuss data obtained from research in five inner‐city urban Santiago neighborhoods involving a mix of sources: in depth interviews, nonparticipant observation, content analysis of CMN legal texts, and copies of the files prepared by neighborhood activists.