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The Production of Urban Space in the ¡®Free Enterprise City¡¯, Houston, Texas


  • Jose L. Beraud Lozano
  • Barry A. Espinosa-Oropeza


The history of Texas and Houston is directly related to the rise of modern capitalism. Through a historiographic observation, in this paper we examine the emergence and consolidation of the city of Houston and how it has captured the intervention of private capital in a voracious land appropriation scheme and speculative real estate industry. This development is founded over a deep-rooted ideology that permeates Houston and Texas, considering land as a commodity and a culture of privatism. We review the rationale and protagonists of the relevant historic phases of urban development that have fed the cultural symbolic dimension of the ¡°free enterprise city¡± and ¡°city of the future.¡± And, demonstrate the fallacy of the laissez-faire ideology predicated by the business elite while lobbying for government funds to extend Houston¡¯s urban territory, build infrastructure, and invest in expensive industrial facilities which mainly benefit the elite.

Suggested Citation

  • Jose L. Beraud Lozano & Barry A. Espinosa-Oropeza, 2014. "The Production of Urban Space in the ¡®Free Enterprise City¡¯, Houston, Texas," International Journal of Social Science Studies, Redfame publishing, vol. 2(1), pages 1-15, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:rfa:journl:v:2:y:2014:i:1:p:1-15

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    Houston; urban development; urban policy; ideology; privatism; laissez-faire; government intervention; land as commodity;

    JEL classification:

    • R00 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General - - - General
    • Z0 - Other Special Topics - - General


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