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The Neoliberal DelugeHurricane Katrina, Late Capitalism, and the Remaking of New Orleans$
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Cedric Johnson

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780816673247

Published to Minnesota Scholarship Online: August 2015

DOI: 10.5749/minnesota/9780816673247.001.0001

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Laboratorization and the “Green” Rebuilding of New Orleans’s Lower Ninth Ward

Laboratorization and the “Green” Rebuilding of New Orleans’s Lower Ninth Ward

(p.225) Chapter 8 Laboratorization and the “Green” Rebuilding of New Orleans’s Lower Ninth Ward
The Neoliberal Deluge

Barbara L. Allen

University of Minnesota Press

This chapter examines the technological transformation of the flood-damaged Holy Cross, a subdistrict of the Lower Ninth Ward neighborhood in New Orleans, after Hurricane Katrina. Using insights gleaned from science and technology studies, including a version of “laboratory studies” as developed by Bruno Latour, it considers the dynamics of Holy Cross’s remarkable post-Katrina transition from devastated neighborhood to a beacon of sustainability and green architecture. Latour’s version of laboratory studies is an applied methodological approach to track emerging technoscience innovation and transfer on-the-ground; it is demonstrative of the application of another broader theoretical and methodological approach that was also developed in part by him—actor-network theory. The chapter calls for “just sustainability” that combines traditional sustainability and environmental justice goals—in particular, “the need for distributed environmental goods and harms to all regardless of race or class”.

Keywords:   technological transformation, Holy Cross, Lower Ninth Ward, New Orleans, Hurricane Katrina, laboratory studies, Bruno Latour, just sustainability, green architecture, environmental justice

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