Beyond Zuccotti Park: Freedom of Assembly and the Occupation of Public Space

Edited by Ron Shiffman, Rick Bell, Lance Jay Brown, and Lynne Elizabeth. New Village Press, $19.95 (408) ISBN 978-1-61332-009-9
In this essay collection, the Occupy Wall Street movement (OWS) presents the catalyst for a multitude of writers to discuss public space, private space, and civic demonstration and assemblage in the gray areas that arise in between.  Essays on recent sites of protest, from Zuccotti Park to Tahrir Square, lead off the book's five sections, advocating "for a more reliable guarantee of the public's access" to these locations. A systematic breakdown of City Planning regulations illustrates the ‘privately owned public space' loophole that allowed OWS to take over Zuccotti Park.  The fourth section, "Public Space Over Time," traces the value of public space in community all the way back to the Ancient Greek agora. In concluding essays about the future of civic demonstration, a central question arises: "[i]n this era of the greatest expansion of the urban realm since the beginning of human civilization…what are the most profound functions to be considered when planning for human congregation?" The editors have assembled a chorus of voices into a fascinating if somewhat disjointed dialogue on the occupation of public space. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 01/07/2013
Release date: 10/01/2012
Open Ebook - 480 pages - 978-1-61332-011-2
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