CANCELLED! Inaugural Lecture: Peris Jones: "More than ‘paper over the cracks’? Spaces of Non-Rights and the Right to the City as political antidote"

This lecture i postponed - a new date will be announced shortly!

- A short introduction and welcome by director Inga Bostad to our new Associate Professor Peris Jones.

- Inaugural lecture 45 minutes

- Questions and discussion 20 - 30 minutes

- Reception


These are interesting, if not disorienting and disturbing times for those working within human rights theory and practice. The apparent backlash in several Western countries is something, however, known longer to many of those in the Global South, where the veneer of rights wears thinner still. There are multiple reasons for the high tide of populism. An interesting aside is how those particular targets of populist rage, namely, globalisation (cum neo-liberalism) and human rights, emerged in the same historical time-span. Whether or not by coincidence, their inter-play sets the scene for some fundamental ‘design’ limitations of human rights. By looking at the mutual effects of geographic space and rights in two ways, the lecture seeks to open up these limitations to scrutiny and then (potential) repair.

First, I discuss some of my previous work on the role of political and spatial context for structuring ‘access’ to a right (particularly health) and the relations between space and rights that can co-determine it. Second, further examples of the benefits of thinking about geographies of law and rights are provided, with the main focus then placed upon current work on the Right to the City as an analytical device to serve two particular objectives: to explore both the unevenness of rights and even their non-existence in particular spaces, such as the slum city of the global south, illustrated by Nairobi, Kenya; but then to use the Right to the City to provoke discussion about what else may be required by human rights more generally to avoid being something other than ‘paper over the cracks’ or even worse, to counteract a slide into a post-rights era? ​

The inaugural lecture with a small reception afterwards is open to all.

Published Jan. 30, 2017 4:00 PM - Last modified Feb. 27, 2017 3:48 PM