Enacting propriety: property, planning, and the production of settler colonial geographies

Elya Lucy Milner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Described as a rational, positivist procedure of land use allocation, urban and regional planning has traditionally been understood as an apolitical process. In recent years, however, critical geographers have sought to reveal the inherently political nature of planning by exposing its entanglement with property relations, which are inescapably defined by exclusion, domination, and control. In the current paper I aim to contextualize this conversation in settler colonial geographies, and to analyse how planning is used to anchor the settler colonial legal regime of property in material geographies. I examine this theoretical proposition using a case study of one Bedouin family’s struggle to be granted a building permit to build their house on their land in the Galilee region in Israel. The main objective of this paper is twofold: it is intended to contribute to the understanding of the ways settler colonial space is produced, as well as to the development of a critical conversation on planning practices through the settler colonial prism.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)278-293
Number of pages16
JournalSettler Colonial Studies
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2 Apr 2020


  • Israel
  • Palestine
  • Property
  • planning

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Demography
  • Cultural Studies
  • History
  • Anthropology
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Law


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