Gender and Public Space in Divided Cities

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Abstract

The paper addresses two connected questions: firstly, in what ways might ‘public’ and ‘private’ spaces in cities be gendered; and secondly, what might this mean for the possibilities for complex forms of civility in a divided city such as Belfast? The specific focus on gendered dynamics of entitlement to inhabit urban space in this paper begins with some consideration of debates about the quality and experience of everyday life in cities, and the emergence of commonsense notions of ‘public’ and ‘private’ behaviour. Following this, key research concerned with the gendered dynamics of claimed collective, and particularly national, identities are outlined, in order to consider the significance of this literature for any study of the gender dynamics of life in a contested political context such as Belfast.

Keywords

  • Gender, Parenting, Public Space, Belfast, Civility.

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