Urban Outcasts: A Contextualized Outlook on Advanced Marginality


This comment on Urban Outcasts appreciates Wacquant’s awareness of contextual difference and his effort to theorize advanced marginality. Two critical remarks are formulated regarding the use of the polarization thesis as the backdrop for analyzing advanced marginality (which, in my view, goes against the contextual sensitivity of the analysis), and the neglect of the neighbourhood effect literature, which is summarily discarded. The second half of the comment is devoted to a brief discussion of advanced marginality in South European cities and particularly in Athens. It is, therefore, a discussion that contextualizes some of the features that Wacquant proposes for advanced marginality in terms of their occurrence and meaning within a different path towards postā€Fordism and a persistently residual welfare regime (that may bear some similarity with conditions in some other parts of the world, such as South America).