Monday, December 29, 2008

McRee Town Doctoral Defense Tuesday 12/30 1:30pm

Jackie Jones will be defending her doctoral defense at the bar on Tuesday December 30th 1:30pm. All are welcome to come down, listen and ask questions of Ms. Jones.

Royale afternoon drink series presents:

Picturing a Neighborhood: McRee Town in Saint Louis, Missouri

In 2003, the Garden District Commission demolished more than two hundred buildings on the eastern half of the McRee Town neighborhood in Saint Louis. The Commission, a private coalition headed by officials from the nearby Missouri Botanical Garden, demolished six blocks of historic brick homes and apartment buildings that housed primarily low-income renters and homeowners, relocated hundreds of residents, erected twenty-five acres of market-rate, single-family, suburban-style housing on the cleared land, and ceremoniously renamed the area Botanical Heights. This presentation explores how visual representations of McRee Town between 1998-2003 helped legitimize this urban renewal project and the dislocations it caused in the lives of McRee Town residents. It engages viewers with the photographs of burned-out, boarded-up, weed-infested buildings that populated newspaper reports and public relations documents during these five years, and juxtaposes them with photographs taken by Genevelyn Peters, a McRee Town resident prior to the neighborhood's destruction. These images – of family, homelife, play, and community – complicate and challenge the dominant understanding of this neighborhood and its residents as criminal and atomized by presenting images that depict a vibrant neighborhood community.

Jackie Jones is a doctoral student in the Department of American Studies at Saint Louis University. Through an interdisciplinary approach that blends visual culture studies, critical race theory, and urban studies, her research explores how past representations of disenfranchised groups affect contemporary social policy.

Steven Fitzpatrick Smith
The Royale Food & Spirits
3132 South Kingshighway
STL in the MO 63139



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