Urban exposure: feminist crowd-mapping and the new urban imaginary

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This chapter focuses on the possibilities and power of crowd-mapping as a feminist method for shaping urban space. Recognizing that women and girls have been historically excluded from urban discourse, the opportunity provided by crowd-sourced media to express their experiences of city spaces and their struggle and hope for social justice is new. As a democratic process, crowd-mapping can lead to action and solving real-world issues. With a view to harnessing crowd-mapped voices, and to extending socio-cultural understanding of cities, the possibility of more inclusive cities is revealed. By using crowd-mapping, women and girls have begun to push back against stereotypes and oppression and discover new ways to assert their voices. Their startling stories of cities are revealed alongside their real and imagined fears about urban spaces. In this chapter, I will discuss how crowd-mapping is a particularly valuable method for the collective (re)imagination of cities, one that is more inclusive of women and girls. By illuminating and acting upon the complexity of women’s relationships in urban spaces – particularly as regards sexual violence – a nuanced understanding of women’s experiences in the city can be harnessed by urban planners, policy makers and their stakeholders.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Routledge Companion to Urban Imaginaries
EditorsChristoph Lindner, Miriam Meissner
Place of PublicationOxon UK
Number of pages12
ISBN (Electronic)9781315163956
ISBN (Print)9781138058880
Publication statusPublished - 2019

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