The People, Place, and Space Reader brings together the writings of scholars, designers, and activists from a variety of fields to make sense of the makings and meanings of the world we inhabit. They help us to understand the relationships between people and the environment at all scales, and to consider the active roles individuals, groups, and social structures play in creating the environments in which people live, work, and play. These readings highlight the ways in which space and place are produced through large- and small-scale social, political, and economic practices, and offer new ways to think about how people engage the environment in multiple and diverse ways.

Providing an essential resource for students of urban studies, geography, sociology and many other areas, this book brings together important but, till now, widely dispersed writings across many inter-related disciplines. Introductions from the editors precede each section; introducing the texts, demonstrating their significance, and outlining the key issues surrounding the topic. A companion website, PeoplePlaceSpace.org, extends the work even further by providing an on-going series of additional reading lists that cover issues ranging from food security to foreclosure, psychiatric spaces to the environments of predator animals.

part Section 1|38 pages

Diverse Conceptions between People, Place, and Space

chapter 1|5 pages

Constructing Differences in Public Spaces

Race, Class, and Gender as Interlocking Systems (1996)

chapter 2|5 pages

Spacetime and the World


chapter 3|5 pages

Psychological Ecology


chapter 4|5 pages



chapter 5|7 pages

One Place after Another

Notes on Site Specificity (1997)

chapter 6|5 pages

Spatializing Culture

An Engaged Anthropological Approach to Space and Place (2014)

part Section 2|32 pages

Human Perception and Environmental Experience

part Section 3|34 pages

Place and Identity

chapter 12|5 pages


Physical World Socialization of the Self (1983)

chapter 13|5 pages

Urban Landscape History

The Sense of Place and the Politics of Space (1995)

chapter 14|5 pages

The Idea of Chinatown

The Power of Place and Institutional Practice in the Making of a Racial Category (1987)

chapter 15|5 pages

The Brandon Archive


chapter 16|3 pages

The Poor Little Rich Man


chapter 17|5 pages

Migration, Material Culture and Tragedy

Four Moments in Caribbean Migration (2008)

part Section 4|40 pages

Power, Subjectivity, and Space

chapter 18|5 pages

Tall Storeys


chapter 19|6 pages

Desire and the Prosthetics of Supervision

A Case of Maquiladora Flexibility (2001)

chapter 21|5 pages

The Social Becomes the Spatial, the Spatial Becomes the Social

Enclosures, Social Change and the Becoming of Places in the Swedish Province of Skåne (1985)

part Section 5|36 pages

Meanings of Home

chapter 26|5 pages

You Got to Remember You Live in Public Housing

Place-making in an American Housing Project (2008)

chapter 28|3 pages

Home Rules


chapter 29|5 pages


Territory and Identity (2000)

part Section 6|36 pages

“Public” and “Private”

chapter 31|5 pages

To Go Again to Hyde Park

Public Space, Rights, and Social Justice (2003)

chapter 33|5 pages

Privacy Could Only Be Had in Public

Gay Uses of the Streets (1995)

chapter 34|5 pages

People Who Live in Glass Houses

Edith Farnsworth, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, and Phillip Johnson (1998)

part Section 7|36 pages

The Urban Experience

chapter 37|5 pages

Paris, Capital of the Nineteenth Century

Exposé of 1939 (1939)

chapter 38|5 pages

Spatial Practices

Walking in the city (1984)

chapter 39|4 pages

The Uses of Sidewalks

Contact (1961)

chapter 40|6 pages

People as Infrastructure

Intersecting Fragments in Johannesburg (2004)

chapter 41|6 pages

City Life and Difference


part Section 8|30 pages

Landscape: Nature and Culture

chapter 44|5 pages

This Land is Ours Now

Spatial Imaginaries and the Struggle for Land in Brazil (2004)

chapter 45|5 pages

Beyond Wilderness and Lawn


chapter 46|5 pages

Ecstatic Places


part Section 9|37 pages

The Social Production of Space and Time

chapter 49|6 pages

A Time for Space and a Space for Time

The Social Production of the Vacation House (1980)

chapter 50|5 pages

A Room of One's Own


chapter 51|5 pages

The Last Place They Thought Of

Black Women's Geographies (2006)

chapter 52|6 pages

Class Struggle on Avenue B

The Lower East Side as Wild Wild West (1996)

part Section 10|34 pages

Shifting Perspectives Optics for Revealing Change and Reworking Space

chapter 54|4 pages

Toward an Architecture of Humility

On the Value of Experience (1999)

chapter 55|6 pages

Rethinking Environmental Racism

White Privilege and Urban Development in Southern California (2000)

chapter 58|5 pages

On the Grounds of Globalization

A Topography for Feminist Political Engagement (2001)

part Section 11|36 pages

The Spatial Imagination

chapter 62|5 pages

Drawing the Coral Heads

Mental Mapping and its Physical Representation in a Polynesian Community (2003)

chapter 64|4 pages

De-, Dis-, Ex-


part Section 12|30 pages

Democratic Prospects and Possibilities

chapter 66|4 pages



chapter 67|4 pages

Living the “Revolution” in an Egyptian village

Moral Action in a National Space (2012)

chapter 69|5 pages

Containing Children

Some Lessons on Planning for Play from New York City (2002)