The deepest troubles of the planet today do not lie only with geopolitical conflicts and world-economic ravages.They are also brewing in the metropolitan centers, as we saw most recently and clearly in the “French” suburban uprising of fall 2005, led by not quite so post-colonial subjects.Yet what happened in France in this case remains to be properly understood, especially by students of politics engaged with critical theory. After all, a few radical exponents of the latter joined the struggles against the conditions that spectacularly engulfed les banlieues in flames, placing them on a spatio-temporal axis aligned with the events of 1848, 1871, and 1968: Alain Badiou advocating for sans-papiers, Pierre Bourdieu denouncing neoliberalism, and Étienne Balibar arguing for the “right to the city” against neo-racism.1 Even Jacques Derrida’s post-9/11 book Rogues2 may be extended with a little imagination to touch on the formidable forces bearing down on the predominantly North and Black Africans now living in the formerly “red” rings of French working-class suburbs, while being subjected to the worst deprivations registered in vivid detail by Bourdieu and his colleagues.3 But an adequate account of les banlieues should exceed the work of any one of these critical thinkers. It demands a historical perspective capable of articulating spatial forms with social relations at various levels of our new global reality-from the quotidian, through the urban, to the global. Moving

through these levels of analysis to make sense of rebellious actions, and their mediation by emerging relations between cities and world order, now requires a critique sharply focused on three key terms: space, difference, and everyday life.