HomeDéplacements forcés dans les villes du Sud : les déguerpissements en question

HomeDéplacements forcés dans les villes du Sud : les déguerpissements en question

Déplacements forcés dans les villes du Sud : les déguerpissements en question

Forced displacement in Southern Cities: Eviction, relocation, resettlement

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Published on Monday, December 03, 2012


Dans les pays dits du sud, la question des déplacements forcés est fortement associée aux mobilités liées à des situations de conflits et très rarement appliquée aux « mobilités sous contraintes » effectuées dans le cadre de processus de relégation urbaine ou de déguerpissement. A l’échelle internationale, le terme même de « déplacé » renvoie au statut, reconnu depuis 1998 par les Nations Unies des personnes forcées de fuir leur résidence habituelle, dans une situation de crise, notamment en raison d’un conflit armé, mais sans franchir de frontière étatique et se différenciant à ce titre des « réfugiés ». Dans ce numéro de L’Espace politique, les coordinatrices souhaitent déplacer la focale d’observation, en passant de l’échelle nationale à l’échelle urbaine, en prêtant attention, dans les sociétés du sud, aux déplacements forcés ou déguerpissements réalisés dans le cadre de transformations urbaines.


The study of involuntary displacement in southern countries is often centered on refugees and forced mobility caused by conflicts, and less frequently considers urban involuntary resettlements. The status of “displaced person”, internationally recognized in 1998 by the United Nations, defines people involuntary displaced from their homes in a context of crisis, particularly because of armed conflicts. Those displaced people do not necessarily cross an international border.

This issue of L’Espace Politique proposes to change the point of view and focus on the urban scale rather than on the national one, paying attention to forced resettlements in a context of urban change rather than in conflict situations. It will focus on forced mobilisation within urban areas during eviction operations that typify neoliberal urban policies. Despite the suggested alternatives and recommendations by international actors, eviction remains a common method to “clean” southern cities of their most undesirable citizens by relegating them to the urban margins. What shapes do resettlements take from one society to another and what are the procedures? By whom are they conducted and in the name of what goals and values? These questions arise through different fields within the social sciences. Without being exclusive, we offer three main areas of research for as potential articles:

  • 1. The relevance and role of categories used by authorities and by citizens to designate eviction processes. The French word “déguerpissement” is historically linked to operations taking place in “French” African cities during the colonial period. Can it be generalized as a category of analysis of exclusion – often violent – of city dwellers considered “undesirable”? Does the existence of many different terms to designate forced mobility from the city-center to suburban areas (eviction, relocation, resettlement…) mean that there are different relationships between city dwellers and authorities from one society to another?
  • 2. What are the practices in southern cities in terms of resettlement? How are the evictions carried out? Which people are evicted? Are there fair or just compensations? Where are the displaced persons resettled? What consequences do forced relocations have? Can we see a chance for regular access to land tenure for the urban poor? Or rather is it a way to remove undesirable people or groups from resources located in the city-center? What about their « right to the city »? Should we consider resettlement sites as unjust localizations?
  • 3. What shapes do these relocation sites take? Involuntary displacement means eviction but also, frequently, a forced resettlement that is insertion in a new place. How do those places develop? Are there alternatives that could be more just or fair?


Proposals of articles of up to 60,000 characters, with footnotes, bibliography and illustrations included, (see layout) should be sent by e-mail to

before February 28, 2013.

Editorial Team



  • Thursday, February 28, 2013


  • Amandine Spire
    courriel : amandinespire [at] gmail [dot] com
  • Julie Blot
    courriel : julie [dot] blot [at] voila [dot] fr

Information source

  • Julie Blot
    courriel : julie [dot] blot [at] voila [dot] fr


CC0-1.0 This announcement is licensed under the terms of Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal.

To cite this announcement

« Déplacements forcés dans les villes du Sud : les déguerpissements en question », Call for papers, Calenda, Published on Monday, December 03, 2012, https://calenda.org/230238

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