This paper explores and tackles the meaning and issues of Roxas Night Market in Davao City as conceived space. Guided by Henri Lefebvre’s notion of space as conceived, which refers to the perspective of planners, designers, or engineers, the night market in Davao City is described as space created by the Local Government Unit (LGU) and regulated by rules that it has set. Recognizing that this notion of space impinges upon the life of the street vendors, the LGU’s account of the issues that beset the area as rules are applied and decisions are imposed is also identified and looked into. Consequently, such issues interface with the other two notions of space of Lefebvre as lived and practiced. More to the point, space as lived stands for the meanings that vendors attach to their experiences as they reflect on their past and imagine their future, and space as practiced pertains to the vendors’ day-to-day experiences as they subsist in their vending sites. Using case study as research design, the night market through Lefebvre’s space as conceived can be interpreted as the LGU’s economic rationalization of space use in the context of the changing needs of the city and the uses of its public space. Corollary to this, it is also in response to the increasing number of street vendors in the city center, a way of framing vendors as symbols of resilience against terrorism after the bombing incident in 2016, and as an expression of the uncertainty and limits of its plans as the LGU grapples with its responsibility to decide on the future of street vendors and the night market in the city.


informal street vending, production of space, resilience, local narratives, inclusivity

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Kritika Kultura
Department of English
School of Humanities
Ateneo de Manila University

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International Board of Editors

Jan Baetens
Faculty of Arts
Katholieke Universiteit te Leuven (Belgium)

Joel David
Professor of Cultural Studies
Inha University (South Korea)

Michael Denning
Professor of American Studies and English
Department of English
Yale University (US)

Faculty of Cultural Sciences
Universitas Gadjah Mada (Indonesia)

Regenia Gagnier
Professor of English
University of Exeter (UK)

Leela Gandhi
John Hawkes Professor of the Humanities and English
Brown University (US)

Inderpal Grewal
Professor of Women's Gender and Sexuality Studies
Professor of South Asian Studies, Ethnicity, Race and Migration Studies
Yale University (US)

Peter Horn
Professor Emeritus and Honorary Lifetime Fellow
University of Cape Town (South Africa)
Honorary Professor and Research Associate in German Studies
University of the Witwatersrand (South Africa)

Anette Horn
Professor of German Studies
University of the Witwatersrand (South Africa)

David Lloyd
Distinguished Professor of English
University of California, Riverside (US)

Bienvenido Lumbera
National Artist for Literature
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University of the Philippines

Rajeev S. Patke
Director of the Division of Humanities
Professor of Humanities
Yale NUS College (Singapore)

Vicente L. Rafael
Giovanni and Amne Costigan Endowed Professor of History
University of Washington (US)

Vaidehi Ramanathan
Department of Linguistics
University of California, Davis (US)

Temario Rivera
Professorial Lecturer
Department of Political Science
University of the Philippines

E. San Juan, Jr.
Philippines Studies Center (US)

Neferti X.M. Tadiar
Professor of Women’s, Gender, & Sexuality Studies
Barnard College (US)
Director of the Center for the Study of Ethnicity and Race
Columbia University (US)

Antony Tatlow
Honorary Professor of Drama
Trinity College Dublin (Ireland)