Desire and the Abject in the City Becoming-Other

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John Fitzgerald
Terry Threadgold


When The Age renamed the corner of Russell and Bourke streets the ‘Golden Elbow’ it brought the city into close proximity with an altogether different city. Neither Chang Mai, Hong Kong nor Melbourne, the Golden Elbow was defined by what it could be. Neither one thing (Melbourne) nor another (somewhere else), the Golden Elbow is a space of the city-becoming-other. Through narrative work and news media maps of no-go zones, machines mobilise fear and thus value, from the desire flowing through this abject zone. Capitalism sucks value from these encounters through the production of fear as affect. The city-becoming-other is both enormously productive, and destructive of bodies caught up in the mix. This article explores the flow of desire and the abject of a city becoming other through a street drug marketplace.  The encounter with the abject brings use closer to the beauty and fear of ontological mixity.

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