Challenging Collaborative Consumption at a Critical Juncture: Airbnb in the Matrix of Gentrification and Colonization
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Ten years since the nationwide J14 housing protests against Israel’s increasing cost of living, affordable housing remains just as scarce, even prompting some city-dwellers to seek cheaper living in West Bank settlements – a military-occupied Palestinian Territory. Given that Israel is often called the Start-Up Nation, Airbnb’s rise in Tel Aviv-Yaffo and West Bank settlements was exceptional. Thus, my thesis aims to determine Airbnb’s role in the Tel Aviv-Yaffo housing crisis and the West Bank settlement economy. My research demonstrates the ways in which Airbnb accelerates the existing historic trends in Tel Aviv-Yaffo and the West Bank by introducing new capital flows via the sharing platforms. While existing Israeli literature on Airbnb’s activity in Tel Aviv-Yaffo has done an adequate job of addressing the phenomenon as a policy and legal issue, none have understood it within Israel-Palestine’s gentrification-colonization matrix. My contribution is applying Anglo gentrification literature to consider how these activities unfold in particular ways within Israel-Palestine’s unique colonial context. Through a post-colonial lens, my thesis reveals how Airbnb has exacerbated the housing crisis by converting residential units into illegal hotels, displaced marginalized Jews in south Tel Aviv-Yaffo, turned human rights violations into tourist attractions, and further displaced Palestinian Arabs living both within and outside the Green Line.
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Viktoriya Vinik (2021). Challenging Collaborative Consumption at a Critical Juncture: Airbnb in the Matrix of Gentrification and Colonization. UWSpace. http://hdl.handle.net/10012/16927