The Revival of Urban Political Economy: Henry Lefebre


  In the late 1960s and early 1970s the Marxian traditions was used again in social science.Especially France was affected urban analysis by Henri Lefebvre.He is no question  the seminal source of  new thinking on the city from a critical and Marxian view for broken down into four areas.

1)      He investigated Marx and Engel’s writings about urban political economy.He explained that how it was possible to use economic categories such as profit,rent,wages,capital investment and uneven development in the analysis of cities.He disputed that the city development process was a product of the capitalist system.

2)      He told the idea of the tours of capital and the idea that real estate is a separate tour of capital.He called all industrial activity the ‘primary circuit of capital’.This type was created much of riches in a capital society.There was a ‘second circuit of capital’ real estate investment for Lefebvre.He disputed that money is to be  made real estate although there is a decreasing in all economic sectors at present.

3)      He told the idea that the real estate is a special case of the dynamics of  settlement space.All social activities are about space as well.Social activities take part of space.They produce space by creating objects.

4)      Finally,he interested in the role of government in space.Space is used for social controls by the state.The government dispenses resources and collects taxes.It decides  and relays  to individuals across the network of administrative units.

According to Lefebvre, social activities create spaces. People create places for their needs and there are different kinds of people so that there are different places.

Class conflict theories


  For David Gordon, capitalists choose about factory is not only about economical needs but also wanting workers be far away from union organization areas. Factory owners build factories in place where workers are not militant as they are in cities. To control the labor conflict, owners build factories distance places. As a consequence of this there is a suburbanization factory that causes multicentered cities.

Michael Storper and David Walker expanded Gordon’s idea. They claimed that labor force consideration is a variable thing. They did a theory called labor theory of location this theory claims that commodity and labor is unique that they not only depend on physical quality but also depend on workers education and interest for being a part of organization.

Consequently, according to class conflict approach, every nation has variable areas of their quality. This is affected by education and traditional effects. As a consequence, several cultural conditions are important for creating well-behaved labor consideration.

These theorists failed because they expressed everything regarding with economic factors. But technological factors affect class conflict, too.

According to Manual Castell, professional countries have developing welfare level. This means that government provides for all people supporting programs such as unemployment insurance. These programs are controlled by government. “Struggles for resources by residents of the city, therefore, often took the form of conflicts aimed at local government, rather than the capitalist class” (The new urban sociology, M. Gottdiener 1994 p: 131)


Class accumulation theories


Class conflict theories are described as a disagreement between capitalist factory owners and workers sell their labor for a wage.

David Harvey thinks that class conflict occurs because of facing of worker and owner. Working group divides into another part and owners groups too.

According to him government intervened then plan works so that capitalists get profits back. For this reason capitalists want government to intervened and help for profit making process. In primary circuit of capital, owners are interested in areas and cost of production. On the other hand in secondary circuit of capital, they are interested in flow of investment and properties’ rents.

According to Scott, real estate, political development, pull factor are not related with production process. He explains changed in the form of cities. Scott’s approaches are helpful that relation between global economy and location of business is understandable.

Recent sociological approaches


  The growth machine: according to Molotch, cities are growth machine. Government is responsible for growth and developments. Entering more people to urban area means more services. Government provides services with resources. They create resources with tax of property so that they provide services for people, maintain the quality of life.

  The Sociospatial perspective:  it considers real estate development as the leading edge of changes in the metropolitan region. Different from other approaches, it focused on real estate. It considers government intervention and the interest of politicians as a principal factor in metropolitan chance. For understanding the metropolitan life Sociospatial perspective examines the tendency of society. It claimed that other perspectives ignore the importance of real estates for understanding the process of regional development. For understanding the city growth, pull and push factors must be examined. Consequences of studies it can be understood that development of metropolitan region is not only dependent on push factors, class conflicts or capital accumulation. Development is caused by the pull factors of people’s activities involved in secondary circuit of capital, real estate. It is composed of owners wanting wealth from real estate and structure that channels money into the built environment. Second means that people invest their money to land. Secondary circuit of capital consists of intersection between structure and agency.

Developers meet with government planners to build environment. They construct structures with the interests.