chapter  4
The developer’s real estate culture
Pages 22

This chapter focuses on developer-led cultural productions that serve to legitimate the developer's role as a government agent in housing production and community building and to market the housing compounds as upscale retreats. The developer's close partnership with the government is highlighted in a media-based "real estate culture" that combined "enterprise culture" with "consumer culture". This culture promotes real estate businesses in a manner reminiscent of the official propaganda of the socialist era. The chapter aims to map the complex cultural productions as the manifestations of contradictory urban identities of the postsocialist cities. It examines the contemporary cultural productions and sociopolitical discourses in the media: advertisements of real estate businesses; journalistic reports of conflicts between homeowners, developers, and local authorities; and discourses and debates on homeowner identities. By examining these media representations, the chapter shows how the socialist ideals of state leadership, class struggle, and working-class hardship evolve into new manifestations in the cultural production.