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Lindsey Dillon / Toxic City: Redevelopment and Environmental Justice in San Francisco

May 29 @ 6:00 pm

City Lights in conjunction with San Francisco Bay Chapter Physicians for Social Responsibility present

Lindsey Dillon

discussing her new book

Toxic City: Redevelopment and Environmental Justice in San Francisco

published by University of California Press

Toxic City presents a novel critique of postindustrial green gentrification through a study of Bayview-Hunters Point, a historically Black neighborhood in San Francisco. As cities across the United States clean up and transform contaminated waterfronts and abandoned factories into inviting spaces of urban nature and green living, working-class residents—who previously lived with the effects of state abandonment, corporate divestment, and industrial pollution—are threatened with displacement at the very moment these neighborhoods are cleaned, greened, and revitalized. Lindsey Dillon details how residents of Bayview-Hunters Point have fought for years for toxic cleanup and urban redevelopment to be a reparative process and how their efforts are linked to long-standing struggles for Black community control and self-determination. She argues that environmental racism is part of a long history of harm linked to slavery and its afterlives and concludes that environmental justice can be conceived within a larger project of reparations.

Lindsey Dillon is a critical human geographer and Assistant Professor of Sociology at the University of California, Santa Cruz.

What has been said about the work of Lindsey Dillon:

“Thinking about questions of imperialism and militarism, Lindsey Dillon illuminates the importance—nationally and internationally—of environmental justice and the work on reparations.”—Nicole Fabricant, author of Fighting to Breathe: Race, Toxicity, and the Rise of Youth Activism in Baltimore

“In analyzing how the Bayview-Hunters Point community became a site of environmental vulnerability, Toxic City provides an important history that has been neglected within studies of California and the Bay Area.”—Juan De Lara, author of Inland Shift: Race, Space, and Capital in Southern California

“Incisive, devastating, and inspiring all at once, Dillon’s Toxic City sets a new bar for environmental justice scholarship. This richly textured and engagingly narrated account reveals the tenacity of the residents and community organizers trying to make a better world even as the state has abandoned places and workers deemed essential in wartime as well as in times of ‘green’ urban redevelopment.”—Jill Lindsey Harrison, author of From the Inside Out: The Fight for Environmental Justice within Government Agencies and Pesticide Drift and the Pursuit of Environmental Justice

Made possible by support from the City Lights Foundation