Hot off the press this week we have something special courtesy of Stuart Elden (University of Warwick) and Adam David Morton (University of Sydney) – a translation (by Warwick’s Matthew Dennis) of Henri Lefebvre’s 1956 essay ‘Théorie de la rente foncière et sociologie rurale’ / ‘The Theory of Ground Rent and Rural Sociology’.
It was first published in the Transactions of the Third World Congress of Sociology, and later reprinted in Lefebvre’s Du rural à l’urbain (1970/2001). There are two Spanish translations available, in La renta de la tierra (1983) and De lo rural a lo urbano (1971), and this is the first time it has been available in English.
As Stuart and Adam note in their introduction, ‘Thinking Past Henri Lefebvre’, Lefebvre will be known to most geographers for his prodigious work on everyday life, the city / urban society, the production of space, and, increasingly, the state. Less well known is his longstanding interest in questions of the rural. This new translation is the first step in their project to take on a disciplinary reductionism that “essentialises a critique of the political economy of space to urban space at the neglect of the rural-urban dialectic”, opening up new lines of geographical investigation.
The Antipode Foundation funded the translation as part of our efforts to facilitate engagement with scholarship from outside the English-speaking world, and Antipode‘s publisher, Wiley, has made it and Stuart and Adam’s introduction freely available to those without subscriptions. In the coming months and years we hope to break down some of the barriers between language communities, enabling hitherto under-represented groups, regions, countries and institutions to enrich conversations and debates in the journal. Watch this space…