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Title: Land speculation by villagers : territorialities of accumulation and exclusion in peri-urban China
Authors: Kan, K 
Chen, X
Issue Date: Dec-2021
Source: Cities, Dec. 2021, v. 119, 103397
Abstract: Speculation in land and real estate has become a chief means of revenue generation in cities across the world. The literature on speculative urbanism has discussed how the advent of land markets transformed government strategies and created new partnerships between state and capital for rent extraction. Far less attention, however, has been paid to grassroots practices of speculation among residents of peri-urban and rural areas, whose neighbourhoods are often dramatically transformed by the rapid appreciation in land prices brought about by urbanization. Based on fieldwork in a Chinese urban village, this paper demonstrates how land commodification gave rise to competitive territorialization and forms of "intimate exclusion" within the community. The boom in property prices amplified inequalities between villagers, as those with greater access to capital, authority and social networks were better positioned to reap gains from the market while those without land rights were excluded. The desire to capitalize on market gains furthermore sharpened intra-community conflicts, creating tensions between neighbours and family members over issues of ownership and distribution. By focusing on everyday practices of territorialization at the neighbourhood level, this paper sheds light on how land speculation and rentiership could contribute to deepened differentiation at the urban frontier.
Keywords: Land speculation
Speculative urbanism
Publisher: Pergamon Press
Journal: Cities 
ISSN: 0264-2751
EISSN: 1873-6084
DOI: 10.1016/j.cities.2021.103394
Rights: © 2021 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (
The following publication Karita Kan, Xi Chen, Land speculation by villagers: Territorialities of accumulation and exclusion in peri-urban China, Cities 2021, Volume 119, 103394 is available at
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