Inclusion under the law as exclusion from the city: negotiating the spatial limitation of citizenship in Seattle
We use this paper to argue that the contemporary tendency of urban governments to exclude a host of ‘undesirables’ from the city—such as the homeless, teens of color, and prostitutes—must be seen as part of a broader process by which the law includes, weighs, and assesses all urban denizens. We use three case studies from Seattle to demonstrate how the law enacts a vision of urban form which reflects and spatially enforces core normative liberal identities, even when the state seeks to render the city more inclusive, fair, and just. In so doing, we underscore how the incorporation of these identities into state processes not only solidifies and reinforces the exclusion of undesirable or disorderly ‘others’, but also spatially sorts all urban dwellers along a variety of identity lines.
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