In 2005 49% of the world population was living in the cities. Humanity is now urbanized for the first time in history. But what the cities of today really are?
Toxic slums of crime and misery, industrial platforms of neo-fordist production, gentrified centers for financial services and cognitive capitalism – cities are all of the three and possibly more than that. In each case contemporary city results from mutations of world capitalism and at the same time is fueling and actively shaping its expansion. Cities are extremely dense milieus of socialization, social and economic exchange, capitalistic and non-capitalistic productivity. As such they are places of dwelling and survival, laboratories for strategies of control, technologies of power as well as workshops of collective and individual struggles and resistances. Cities are forges of our present and steel mills of our future.