January 2, 2021 at 1:45 pm

Sociology and Anthropology Colloquium | Cultivating the City: Urban Agriculture and the Promise of Property, Feb. 11

Nate Ela, portrait

Dr. Nate Ela

The Sociology and Anthropology Colloquium in partnership with the Center for Law, Justice & Culture hosts a talk by Professor Nate Ela on “Cultivating the City: Urban Agriculture and the Promise of Property” on Thursday, Feb. 11, from 3 to 4 p.m.

The talk will be followed by an informal happy hour chat with the speaker from 4 to 4:30 p.m.

Ela’s talk will address why urban reformers have repeatedly sought to let the poor and unemployed use vacant lots. In the talk, Ela explains the enduring appeal of projects that reallocate rights to use idle land by comparing three periods of urban farming and gardening in Chicago, from the Progressive Era to the present. These moments reveal the limits and possibilities of redistribution achieved not via tax and transfer, but rather by experimenting with the rules, norms, and forms of urban property.

Ela is Assistant Professor of Political Science and Law at the University of Cincinnati. He received his Ph.D. in sociology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. His recent work on property, social policy, and human rights has appeared in Social Problems, Social Science History, Law & Social Inquiry and the Fordham Urban Law Review.



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