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Main Title: Mediatizing Slum Relocation in Egypt: Between Legitimization and Stigmatization
Author(s): Elmouelhi, Hassan
Meyer, Martin
Reda, Reham
Abdelhalim, Asmaa
Type: Article
Abstract: In Egypt, the relocation of residents of informal areas of housing into “proper” living environments is presented as a major political achievement offering citizens a much-improved quality of life. Therefore, it is not surprising that, following the Arab Uprisings, the current regime is widely publicizing relocation projects as success stories on TV and social media. As a way of garnering legitimization and securing stability, this official representation is reshaping the residents’ urban life and evoking narratives of slum dwellers’ transformation into respected citizens. Tackling a new area of interdisciplinary research between urban studies and media and communication studies, this article investigates the portrayal in mainstream media channels and social media platforms of two relocation projects (Al-Asmarat in Cairo and Al-Max in Alexandria), contrasting them with the residents’ perceptions of their new homes and their efforts to produce counter-imagery. The authors argue that both the state-dominated representation of the Al-Asmarat resettlement as an ideal solution to the crisis of informal settlements, as well as the more bottom-up construction of the Al-Max community as a picturesque fishing community, do not reflect the material experience of the inhabitants—despite it being presented as such in nationwide reporting. The effective centering of the public debate around the mediatized images has thus deflected criticism and enabled urban development projects to be positioned to legitimize the current rule despite the shortcomings of their implementation.
Subject(s): informal settlements
social media
urban development
Issue Date: 17-Dec-2021
Date Available: 28-Dec-2021
Language Code: en
DDC Class: 300 Sozialwissenschaften
710 Städtebau, Raumplanung, Landschaftsgestaltung
Journal Title: Media and communication
Publisher: Cogitatio
Volume: 9
Issue: 4
Publisher DOI: 10.17645/mac.v9i4.4491
Page Start: 345
Page End: 359
EISSN: 2183-2439
TU Affiliation(s): Fak. 6 Planen Bauen Umwelt » Inst. Architektur » FG Städtebau und internationale Urbanistik (Habitat Unit)
Zentralinstitut El Gouna
Appears in Collections:Technische Universität Berlin » Publications

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