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Panel 24. Territorial stigma: introjection, resistance, and production of new territorial identities


  • Alejandra Rasse, profesora asociada, Escuela de Trabajo Social PUC
  • Claudia Concha
  • Camila Rasse, profesora en Escuela de Trabajo Social PUC
  • Sarella Robles, Municipalidad de Puente Alto


Urban studies frequently use the notion of territorial stigma to explain the processes of discrediting that impact residents of particular parts of the city, whether for reasons of socioeconomic class, ethnicity, nationality, or other factors. Territorial stigmatization would help some social groups to continue in a position of subordination resulting from previously existing asymmetry of power, making them bearers of a number of undesirable features that, among other things, make them deserve of their urban disadvantage.

When investigating what is happening inside the communities inhabiting these stigmatized areas, US and European research has focused mostly on the direct responses to stigma—resistance and introjection. These responses, meanwhile, are provided within the context of additional, varied ways that the locals produce and reproduce their territorial identities. These techniques may ignore, acknowledge, or be concurrent with the territorial denigration.

While some authors emphasize the socio-communitarian fragmentation of these territories, research indicates that stigmatized areas have a variety of territorial organizations, produce territorial identities through their actions, and have opinions about the stigmatization that is applied to them. These groups represent a variety of organizational approaches, such as clientelism, institutional dependability, a critical or contesting attitude toward the State, and an embrace of political forms rooted in daily life, among many others. 

Considering this, we cordially welcome researchers to address in this session topics pertaining to the actions and words of local people and groups in stigmatized areas, with an emphasis on how these connect to the stigmatization that is attributed to them. Through this, we propose reflecting on:

  • the ways in which the daily production of cities tense the hegemonic images on particular groups and territories,
  • the socio-cultural, historical, and generational changes of local political forms, and
  • the construction and dispute of disadvantage at the neighborhood level.

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