Image of Tuff Shed towers in Oakland
Lectures & Learning Opportunities School & College Events Hybrid

Spatial Temporalities: The Future-Pasts of Black Dispossession

In this talk, Professor Summers will explore the history of unhoused populations in Oakland, the cyclical displacements of Black locals, and the appearance and reappearance of parking lots in these stories of disruption. She will tell the story of West Oakland, in particular, as a testing ground for speculative urbanism — an urbanism based not in speculator’s profit or the spectacles of a city’s self-branding, but in the utopian and dystopian possibilities that unfold in an ongoing (implicitly and explicitly racialized) housing emergency.

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Hosted by College of Letters and Science


Headshot of Brandi Thompson Summers
Brandi Summers
Associate Professor, Department of Geography

Brandi T. Summers is the author of Black in Place: The Spatial Aesthetics of Race in a Post-Chocolate City. Her current research includes a book project that examines representations and experiences of space, place, and landscape in her hometown, Oakland, and “The Archive of Urban Futures,” a multi-modal archival project, funded by the Mellon Foundation, that focuses on questions of history, value, the right to place, memory, and erasure in Black Oakland. She is a contributing writer for Places Journal, and has published articles in The New York Times, The Boston Globe, Antipode, and Urban Geography, among others.