Clarence N. Stone

in The Oxford Handbook of Urban Politics

Published in print April 2012 | ISBN: 9780195367867
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks


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This article examines the issue of power in the context of urban politics and discusses the view of Alan Harding, who believed in the links of power with place-shaping policy. It also comments on the works of Floyd Hunter, who challenged the textbook version of democracy on the grounds of a civic and largely business-centered-elite-controlled agenda-setting in Atlanta, and of Robert Dahl, who presented both sides of the community power debate as concerned with collective, place-shaping choices and how they were made. The article also highlights the challenge of treating power as involving human agents making choices collectively, while taking into account the importance of context.

Keywords: power; urban politics; place-shaping policy; Alan Harding; democracy; Floyd Hunter; Robert Dahl; community power

Article.  8523 words. 

Subjects: Politics ; Public Policy

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