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Critical Dialogues in Latinx StudiesA Reader$
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Ana Y. Ramos-Zayas and Mérida M. Rúa

Print publication date: 2021

Print ISBN-13: 9781479805198

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: January 2022

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9781479805198.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM NYU Press SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.nyu.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of NYU Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in NYSO for personal use.date: 27 June 2022

Urban Designers and the Politics of Latinizing the Built Environment

Urban Designers and the Politics of Latinizing the Built Environment

(p.279) 21 Urban Designers and the Politics of Latinizing the Built Environment
Critical Dialogues in Latinx Studies

Johana Londoño

NYU Press

This chapter focuses on the career of urban developer and former Secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development, Henry Cisneros, in order to open up a larger discussion on the role that Latinxs and their barrio spaces play in shaping the built environment of the United States. Construction workers, community organizers, artists, and muralists have long been included, and rightfully so, in Latinx studies scholarship as key producers of Latinized built environments. This chapter extends that conversation by grappling with the rarely discussed figure of the professional urban designer. Cisneros, I suggest, is a high-profile example, though not entirely representative, of how professional urban designers imagine a Latinization of US cities. His work, I argue, uses design to socially engineer Latinx belonging to cities in a way that underscores anti-poor, normative housing aesthetics and spaces.

Keywords:   built environment, urban design, housing, aesthetics, barrio, Latinization of cities

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