David Harvey (geographer)
|Full name||David Harvey|
|Birth||October 31, 1935 |
|School/tradition||Geography, social theory|
|Main interests||Geography, Urban Development,|
David Harvey (born 1935, Gillingham, Kent, England) is the Distinguished Professor of Anthropology at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York (CUNY). A leading social theorist of international standing, he received his PhD in Geography from University of Cambridge in 1961. Widely influential, he is among the top 20 most cited authors in the humanities. In addition, he is the world's most cited academic geographer (according to Andrew Bodman, see Transactions of the IBG, 1991, 1992), and the author of many books and essays that have been prominent in the development of modern geography as a discipline. His work has contributed greatly to broad social and political debate, most recently he has been credited with helping to bring back social class and Marxist methods as serious methodological tools in the critique of global capitalism, particularly in its neoliberal form.
Harvey attended Gillingham Grammar School for Boys and St John's College, Cambridge, for both his undergraduate and post-graduate studies. Harvey's early work, beginning with his PhD (on hop production in c.19th Kent), was historical in nature, emerging from a regional-historical tradition of inquiry widely used at Cambridge and in Britain at that time. Historical inquiry runs through his later works (for example on Paris).
By the mid-1960s, he followed trends in the social sciences to employ quantitative methods, contributing to spatial science and positivist theory. Roots of this work were visible while he was at Cambridge, a Department that also housed Richard Chorley, and Peter Haggett. His Explanation in Geography (1969) was a landmark text in the methodology and philosophy of geography, applying principles drawn from the philosophy of science in general to the field of geographical knowledge. But after its publication Harvey moved on again, to become concerned with issues of social injustice and the nature of the capitalist system itself. He has never returned to embrace the arguments made in Explanation, but still he conforms to the critique of absolute space and exceptionalism in geography of the regional-historical tradition that he saw as an outcome of Kantian synthetic a priori knowledge.
Moving from Bristol University to Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore in the USA, he positioned himself centrally in the newly-emerging field of radical and Marxist geography. Injustice, racism, and exploitation were visible in Baltimore, and activism around these issues was tangible in early 1970s East Coast, perhaps more so than in Britain. The journal Antipode was formed at Clark University; Harvey was one of the first contributors. The Boston Association of American Geographers meetings in 1971 were a landmark, with Harvey and others disrupting the traditional approach of their peers. In 1972, in a famous essay on ghetto formation, he argued for the creation of “revolutionary theory”, theory “validated through revolutionary practice”.
Social Justice and the City (1973) expressed Harvey's position that geography could not remain 'objective' in the face of urban poverty and associated ills. It has been cited widely (over 1000 times, by 2005, in a discipline where 50 citations are rare), and it makes a significant contribution to Marxian theory by arguing that capitalism annihilates space to insure its own reproduction. Dialectical materialism has guided his subsequent work, notably the theoretically sophisticated Limits to Capital (1982). LTC furthers the radical geographical analysis of capitalism, and several books on urban processes and urban life have followed it. The Condition of Postmodernity (1989), written while at Oxford, was a bestseller (the London Independent named it as one of the fifty most important works of non-fiction to be published since 1945). It is a materialist assault on postmodern ideas and arguments, suggesting these actually emerge from contradictions within capitalism itself. Justice, Nature and the Geography of Difference (1996) focusses on social and environmental justice (although its dialectical perspective has attracted the ire of some Greens). Spaces of Hope (2000) has a utopian theme and indulges in speculative thinking about how an alternative world might look. His study of Second Empire Paris and the events surrounding the Paris Commune in Paris, Capital of Modernity, is undoubtedly his most elaborated historical-geographical work. The onset of US military action since 2001 has provoked a blistering critique - in The New Imperialism (2003) he argues that the war in Iraq allows US neo-conservatives to divert attention from the failures of capitalism 'at home'. His most recent work, A Brief History of Neoliberalism (2005), provides an historical examination of the theory and divergent practices of neoliberalism since the mid-1970s. This work conceptualizes the neoliberalized global political economy as a system that benefits few at the expense of many, and which has resulted in the (re)creation of class distinction through what Harvey calls "accumulation by dispossession".
After the birth of his daughter Delfina in January 1990, Harvey returned to Johns Hopkins from Oxford in 1993, but spent increasing time elsewhere as a speaker and visitor, notably as a salaried Miliband Fellow at the London School of Economics in the late 1990s. He moved to the City University of New York in 2001 as a Distinguished Professor, now residing in its Department of Anthropology. He has spent much of his academic career in Anglo-America, with brief sojourns in France and a range of foreign visiting appointments (currently as acting Advisory Professor at Tonji University in Shanghai). He has supervised many PhD students. Several of these, such as Neil Smith, Richard Walker, Erik Swyngedouw, Michael Johns, Maarten Hajer, Patrick Bond, Melissa Wright, and Greg Ruiters now hold important academic positions themselves. Two constants in Harvey's life and work have been teaching a course on Marx's Capital, and his support for student activism and community and labour movements (notably in Baltimore).
Critical response to Harvey's work has been sustained. In the early years, there was little love lost between Harvey and proponents of quantitative and non-politicized geography, notably Brian Berry of the University of Texas at Dallas. Additionally, as interest in Marx's thought has waned in recent years, Harvey's continued commitment to it has led to reappraisals and in some cases rejection by younger Leftist scholars. A recent critical appraisal (Castree & Gregory, 2006) explores these critiques in detail.
Harvey's books have been widely translated, particularly into Korean, Spanish, Japanese and Italian as well some into Arabic, Turkish, Norwegian, Russian, German, Chinese, Polish and Romanian. He holds honorary doctorates from Roskilde (Denmark), Buenos Aires (Argentina), Uppsala (Sweden), Ohio State University (USA), Lund University (Sweden) and the University of Kent (UK). Among other awards he has received the Anders Retzius Gold Medal of the Swedish Anthropological and Geographical Societies, The Patron's Medal of the Royal Geographical Society and the Vautrin Lud International Prize in Geography (France). In 2007 he was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
- B.A. (Hons) St Johns College, Cambridge, 1957
- Ph.D. St Johns College, Cambridge, 1961.
- Post-doc, University of Uppsala, Sweden 1960-1961
- Lecturer, Geography, University of Bristol, UK (1961-1969)
- Associate Professor, Department of Geography and Environmental Engineering, Johns Hopkins University, (1969-1973)
- Professor, Department of Geography and Environmental Engineering, Johns Hopkins University (1973-1987, and 1993-2001)
- Halford Mackinder Professor of Geography, University of Oxford(1987-1993)
- Distinguished Professor, Dept. of Anthropology, City University of New York (2001-present)
 Major works
- Explanation in Geography (1969)
- Social Justice and the City (1973)
- The Limits to Capital (1982)
- The Urbanization of Capital (1985)
- Consciousness and the Urban Experience (1985)
- The Condition of Postmodernity (1989)
- The Urban Experience (1989)
- Teresa Hayter, David Harvey (eds.) (1994) The Factory and the City: The Story of the Cowley Automobile Workers in Oxford. Thomson Learning
- Justice, Nature and the Geography of Difference (1996)
- Megacities Lecture 4: Possible Urban Worlds, Twynstra Gudde Management Consultants, Amersfoort, The Netherlands, (2000)
- Spaces of Hope (2000)
- Spaces of Capital: Towards a Critical Geography (2001)
- The New Imperialism (2003)
- Paris, Capital of Modernity (2003)
- A Brief History of Neoliberalism (2005)
- Spaces of Global Capitalism: Towards a Theory of Uneven Geographical Development (2006)
- The Limits to Capital New Edition (2006)
- The Communist Manifesto- New Introduction Pluto Press (2008)
- Cosmopolitanism and the Geographies of Freedom (forthcoming 2009 Columbia University Press)
- Introduction to Marx's Capital (forthcoming 2009 Verso)
 Articles, Lectures, Interviews
- Harvey, D. 2000. Possible Urban Worlds. The Fourth Megacities Lecture. The Hague.
- Merrifield, A. 2002. David Harvey: The Geopolitics of Urbanization. In Metromarxism: A Marxist Tale of the City. New York: Routledge.
- Harvey, D. 2002. Chapter in Geographical Voices: Fourteen Autobiographical Essays. Ed. p Gould and FR Pitts. Syracuse University Press.
- Harvey, D. and Kreisler, H. 2004. A Geographer's Perspective on the New American Imperialism. Conversations with History. Institute of International Studies, UC Berkeley. audio video
- Castree, N. 2004. David Harvey. In Key Thinkers on Space and Place, eds. Hubbard, Kitchin, Valentine. Sage Pubs.
- Castree, N., Essletzbichler, J., Brenner, N. 2004. "Symposium: David Harvey's 'The Limits to Capital': Two Decades On." Antipode 36(3):400-549.
- Harvey, D. 2005. A Brief History of Neoliberalism. University of Chicago Center for International Studies Beyond the Headlines Series. October 26, 2005. audio
- Harvey, D. and Choonara, J. 2006. "A War Waged by the Wealthy", an interview in SR magazine covering Harvey's account of neoliberalism and class.
- Jones, J.P. III, T.Mangieri, M.McCourt, S.Moore, K.Park, M.Pryce-Jones, K.Woodward. 2006. David Harvey Live. New York: Continuum.
- Castree, N. and Gregory, D. 2006. David Harvey: a Critical Reader. Oxford: Blackwell. Trevor Barnes chapter
- Harvey, D. 2006. Neoliberalism and the City. Middlebury College, Rohatyn Center for International Affairs Symposium, "Urban Landscapes: The Politics of Expression". September 29, 2006. audio video
- Ashman, S. 2006. "Symposium: On David Harvey's 'The New Imperialism'." Historical Materialism 14(4): 3-166.
- Lilley, S. 2006 On Neoliberalism: An Interview with David Harvey MR Zine June 19, 2006.
- Harvey, D. 2006. Neoliberalism and the City. 22nd Annual University of Pennsylvania Urban Studies Public Lecture. November 2, 2006. audio
- Harvey, D. 2007. The Neoliberal City. Lecture at Dickinson College, sponsored by the Clarke Forum for Contemporary Issues. Feb 1, 2007. audio video
- Harvey, D., Arrighi, G., Andreas, J., 2008. Symposium on Giovanni Arrighi's Adam Smith in Beijing. March 5, 2008. Red Emma's of Baltimore. video
- A Conversation With David Harvey
- Harvey, D. 2008 Reading Marx's Capital An open course consisting of a close reading of the text of Marx's Capital Volume I in 13 video lectures by David Harvey.
- Escobar, P., 2008 The State of Empire: Pepe Escobar talks to David Harvey The Real News Network August 19, 2008.
- Schouten, P., 2008 Theory Talk #20: David Harvey on the Geography of Capitalism, Understanding Cities as Polities and Shifting Imperialisms Theory Talks October 9, 2008.
- Harvey, D. 2008 The Right to the City, 'New Left Review', October 2008
- Harvey, D. 2008. The Enigma of Capital. A lecture at City University of New York Graduate Center on November 14, 2008 audio
- Harvey, D. 2008. A Financial Katrina - Remarks on the Crisis. A lecture at City University of New York Graduate Center on October 29, 2008 audio
- Harvey, D. 2009. Why the U.S. Stimulus Package is Bound To Fail. January 12, 2009.