©2017 BY MATT HERN

WHAT A CITY IS FOR

This book starts in Portland, interrogating and charting the ongoing aggressive dispersal of Portland’s Black community and trying to make sense of it in the context of perhaps North America’s most liberal, and certainly whitest, city. My thinking swiftly turns into a grappling with sovereignty – trying to reconcile Agamben/Deleuzian notions of post- or alt-sovereignty with arguments in favour of Indigenous sovereignty in the context of racialized histories of dispossession. The title of  the book is What a City is For - and I end up arguing (more or less) that those two claims are not exclusive and that Indigenous sovereignties can be taken seriously (and maybe only seriously) in urban contexts of settler post-sovereign relationships and restitutions.