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Urban Peripheries: Transformations and Reframing – until April 15, 2021

Editors: Alex Magalhães, Tatiana Moura

Deadline for submission: April 15, 2021

Keywords: peripheries, self-produced neighbourhood, socio-spatial segregation, territorial planning.

What do we mean by periphery? This category has been the subject of reappropriation and updating in the most distinct areas of formal knowledge (Law, Territorial Planning, Sociology, Anthropology, Art, Geography, Economics, Education, Epistemology), as well as in the field of social and political discourse. In the midst of this fertile and challenging polyphony, one of the recurring meanings that the term takes on refers to the areas of a city that are around the historical, political and/or economic centre. It encompasses the margins and the suburbs of a city or, also, the municipalities that surround a central metropolitan nucleus. However, the study of the peripheries is much more complex than its spatial analysis and reveals a set of voices and collective subjects with multiple socio-cultural dimensions, such as the history of the place, artistic expressions, the production of languages, etc.

Within the framework of neoliberal reasoning, it is important to recognize the processes of historical and conceptual transformation and reframing of the peripheries, alongside the practices structured by social subjects in the face of these processes.

  • 1 Santos, Boaventura de Sousa (2007), “Para além do Pensamento Abissal: das linhas globais a uma ecol (...)
  • 2 Fernandes, Fernando; Silva, Jailson de Souza; Barbosa, Jorge (2018), “O Paradigma da Potência e a P (...)

The relations between periphery and centre show the existence of abyssal lines, “which divide social reality into two distinct universes: the one 'on this side of the line' and the one 'on the other side of the line’”.1 In light of this, a critical perspective flourishes that seeks to break with what can be considered as the counterpart of the abyssal lines in the plane of the imaginary. Such a counterpart is manifested through an understanding of the peripheries as essentially deformed places and where something is missing, forming a doxa marked by symbolic depreciation. Under such bias, the authentic forms of resilience and of counterhegemonic powers are ignored, while maintaining the status quo that underlies the processes of peripheralization, preventing the emergence of a sociability marked by the right to coexistence.2

In view of these premises, issue 36 of e-cadernos CES intends to collect contributions from scholars, researchers and organic intellectuals from the peripheries themselves, who are involved in the analyses of this phenomenon in its multiple dimensions - territorial, social, economic, cultural, legal, institutional, etc. – and of its place in public policy.

We start from the dialogue between the socio-spatial nature and the empirical research methodologies "with" and "in the" peripheries, in order to arrive at a critical approach regarding the possibilities of action, within the framework of democratic radicalization and emancipation in the face of multiple forms of oppression.

  • 3 Swyngedouw, Erik (2004), “Globalisation or ‘Glocalisation’? Networks, Territories and Rescaling”, R (...)

Calling for contributions from the areas of Law, Territorial Planning, Sociology, Anthropology, Art, Geography, Economics, Education and Epistemology, the central axis of this issue is to revisit this question – and, therefore, the concept – of peripheries, with a special focus for the urban scale, but without neglecting the interscalarities3 inherent to the phenomenon in question. This will be approached from the perspective of its recent transformations, grouped in the following analytical axes:

  1. of a socio-spatial nature;

  2. of an identity and symbolic nature;

  3. of a conceptual and methodological nature.

Based on these axes, we seek to gather debates such as:

  • peripheral production and creation processes;

  • the analysis of cases that recover speech and peripheral voices, in addition to the emergence of new collective subjects;

  • the socio-cultural dimensions that surround the peripheries, such as the history of the place, artistic expressions, the production of languages, the forms of resistance and of recreation of the place;

  • the internal regulatory structures emerging within them, which translate into their own normative codes, territorial and conflict management institutions, making up their socio-legal dimension;

  • the ways and practices by which the State intervenes in the peripheries, aiming at transforming them, and, at the heart of it, its assumptions, objectives and results;

  • the dynamics of expulsion, gentrification, marginalization and/or invisibilization of the peripheries, or (re)creation of marginal and other correlated spatialities;

  • the problematization of the concept of periphery, the naming of places in this way, and the 'fads' that may surround this use;

  • the methodological and political issues involved in the act of researching the peripheries (or “in” the peripheries, or “with” the peripheries, etc.).

This special issue proposal arises from the Colloquium “Peripheries and their recent transformations”, which took place in Portugal from February to April 2019, at the Centre for Social Studies and totalled five sessions. In these, 29 papers were presented and discussed, authored by 36 researchers, with appreciable diversity of theoretical, political, methodological and epistemological perspectives.

Thus, in the present call for submission of texts for a thematic issue of the e-cadernos CES, works originating from the researches and experiences presented in the five sessions of the mentioned Colloquium are especially welcome, in addition to articles and reviews outside the event, which develop studies and researches on the above-mentioned debates.

Reviews may refer to books, movies, music, plays, artistic performances, exhibitions or old and recent television series.

e-cadernos CES is a peer-reviewed, online and entirely open access journal, published by the Centre for Social Studies of the University of Coimbra (Portugal). The journal is currently indexed in CAPES, DOAJ, EBSCO, ERIH Plus and Latindex. For more information about this publication see

Texts should be presented in final version, in Portuguese, English, Spanish, or French. Manuscripts must be originals and not exceed 60,000 characters (with spaces), including notes and references. For the final section @cetera, other manuscripts may be submitted (up to 35,000 characters), such as interviews and discussions (up to 25,000 characters) or book reviews (up to 5,000 characters). The submitted manuscripts must not have been otherwise published in full or in part (in both print or digital format, in Portugal or abroad, in Portuguese or in any other language), or be presently under submission to any other publication.

Detailed guidelines for submitting texts are available at Manuscripts should be sent by email to and authors should clearly identify the thematic issue in question – “Urban peripheries: transformations and reframing”.

All manuscripts will go through a double-blind peer review process.


1 Santos, Boaventura de Sousa (2007), “Para além do Pensamento Abissal: das linhas globais a uma ecologia de saberes”, Revista Crítica de Ciências Sociais, 78, 3-46. Available at

2 Fernandes, Fernando; Silva, Jailson de Souza; Barbosa, Jorge (2018), “O Paradigma da Potência e a Pedagogia da Convivência”, Revista Periferias, 1(1). Available at

3 Swyngedouw, Erik (2004), “Globalisation or ‘Glocalisation’? Networks, Territories and Rescaling”, Review of International Affairs, 1(17), 25-48. Available at

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