Defining Landscape Democracy
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Defining Landscape Democracy

A Path to Spatial Justice

Edited by Shelley Egoz, Karsten Jørgensen and Deni Ruggeri

This stimulating book explores theories, conceptual frameworks, and cultural approaches with the purpose of uncovering a cross-cultural understanding of landscape democracy, a concept at the intersection of landscape, democracy and spatial justice. The authors of Defining Landscape Democracy address a number of questions that are critical to the contemporary discourse on the right to landscape: Why is democracy relevant to landscape? How do we democratise landscape? How might we achieve landscape and spatial justice?
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Chapter 16: Landscape as the spatial materialisation of democracy in Marinaleda, Spain

Emma López-Bahut and Luz Paz-Agras


Marinaleda, a small town in Andalusia, Spain, serves as an interesting case study to help explain the spatial materialisation of democracy. It is studied according to the three scales of justice proposed by critical theorist Nancy Fraser: the distribution of resources, recognition of individual rights and political representation. This chapter examines how these aspects have been implemented in the town and how they have influenced Marinaleda’s habitat. Local inhabitants have transformed the town and its landscape through a genuinely democratic process, representing a tangible expression of their society; they have ceased to be merely users, instead becoming definers of their own habitat at all levels. Therefore, the third dimension of justice – authentic political representation – is the one that guarantees a democracy of the landscape, and here it is possible to see how it has taken shape in every aspect of Marinaleda – in its housing, its public space, the town itself and its agrarian landscape.

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