Publication Details

McGuirk, P. & Dowling, R. (2011). Governing social reproduction in masterplanned estates: Urban politics and everyday life in Sydney. Urban Studies: an international journal for research in urban studies, 48 (12), 2611-2628.


Critical urban research arising from the 'new urban politics' rich heritage has conventionally privileged the politics of accumulation and the city's downtown over the politics of social reproduction and everyday, residential spaces. This paper focuses on residential spaces and the politics involved in recasting everyday practices of social reproduction through private neighbourhood governance. Focusing on the masterplanned estates increasingly prevalent across Sydney's residential landscape, it explores the material practices and subjectivities shaped by these estates' contractual governance and the contours and limits to the formation of self-governing middle-class consumer citizens. The paper highlights a granular fabric to urban politics produced as residents engage with meeting the demands of daily urban life and providing the means of middle-class social reproduction in a neo-liberalised context. Finally, it points to opportunities for a more complete grammar of contemporary urban politics provided by this expanded focus.



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