Saturday 11th September 2010 – Monday 13th September 2010
Oriel College, Oxford. England.
4th Global Conference, Fear, Horror & Terror at the Interface.
Comunicación presentada. Mariano Pérez Humanes y Natalia De Carli.
Download Draft Conference Paper (pdf) ENG
Descargar borrador de la Conferencia (pdf) ESP
Descargar rascunho da Conferência (pdf) PORT
Actas Publicadas en Inter-Disciplinary Press, Priory House, 149B Wroslyn Road, Freeland,
Oxfordshire. OX29 8HR, United Kingdom.
First published in the United Kingdom in eBook format in 2011. First Edition.
Nowadays, particularly on public spaces of contemporary cities talking about fear is integrated into daily life subjects. Living in cities today is to live the fear. Public space and fear combined results in a process of social transformation which generates new forms of social-spatial segregation. Therefore, this research aims to explore how the public spaces of contemporary cities are being built from fear. In order to do that, we study the recent case of the construction of a wall, known as eco-limit, around eleven “favelas” at the south of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Social exclusion, inequality, crime and drug traffic showed to be the elements which prevail in a hierarchical structure of these settlements and became the main concerns of Rio de Janeiro’s citizens have to face.As a try to change this scenery, the government has historically and basically responded by military interventions which haven’t been able to totally control the situation, generating a constant sense of fear and threat: an undeclared war. The horizontal growth of the “favelas” has occupied spaces which are not considered “urbanizable” (allowed to build) such as protected environmental zones. This fact became the government’s way to explain the reason to surround this area with a wall, trying to impede such growth.
Thus, during this study, we conclude that construction in public spaces has increasingly been planed based on technologies of power control. The proposed eco-limit denies the legitimacy of informal settlements as part of the city and the principles of public life. This wall represents an aggressive symbol of the deep social inequalities. Therefore, people who are already socially excluded are now highlighted, stigmatized and differentiated as those who live inside from those who live outside the wall. This act amplified social and spatial segmentation, suspicion and fear in Rio de Janeiro.