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Index of Titles Filed Under 'Urbanism'

PublisherThe Funambulist2017
This conversation with Myriam Dao, Nathalie Muchamad, Miki Nitadori & Ayomih intends to examine the specificity of anti-Asian in France. Although it was recorded in January 2017, it resonates with a particularly urgent echo today as, a few day ago, the French police killed Liu Shaoyo, a 56-year-old Chinese Parisian, in his own apartment, in front of his four (French) children. Far from the ‘simple’ observations of biased prejudices that characterize many conversations about racism deployed against Asian bodies, this conversation examines how this racism in France finds its roots deep into colonialism, in French “Indochina” (Viet Nam, Cambodia and Laos) of ...

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In the last five years, the urban computing field has featured an impressive emphasis on the so-called “real-time, database-enabled city” with its synchronized Internet of Things. Julian Bleecker and Nicholas Nova argue to invert this common perspective and speculate on the existence of an “asynchronous city”. Through a discussion of objects that blog, they forecast situated technologies based on weak signals that show the importance of time on human practices. They imagine the emergence of truly social technologies that through thoughtful provocation can invert and disrupt common perspectives.

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PublisherThe Funambulist2014
This podcast, recorded with the three founders of Demilit (Bryan Finoki, Nick Sowers, and Javier Arbona) is a precedent for Archipelago since it constitutes both a walk to examine the hyper controlled policed space of downtown Oakland and a receptacle for the echoes of Occupy Oakland that comes as interludes to our discussion. We observe objects and spaces that are produced by securitarian logic that often attempt to dissimulate their function by an aesthetic of the ordinary. Starting from Oakland City Hall where Occupy used to have its encampment, we spend the first part of the conversation around the administrative/corporate center of ...

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Pick up any academic or popular publication that deals with urban life in Africa and be prepared to be overrun by caricature, hyperbole, stereotypes and moralistic hogwash. Urban Africans are either bravely en route to empowering themselves to attain sustainable livelihoods or the debased perpetrators of the most unimaginable acts of misanthropy. Explanations for these one-dimensional distortions vary from historical path dependency perspectives, to the vagaries of the peddlers of neoliberal globalisation agendas, or to the glorious agency of digni ed actors who persist with their backs straight, chin up despite the cruelties bestowed by governmental neglect and economic malice. ...

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The aim of this second instalment of the African Cities Reader is to provide a space to illuminate emergent urbanisms of Africa in its continental and diasporic richness. The leitmotif of the contemporary globalising era is mobility, which references the incessant circulation of goods, services, ideas, technologies, imaginaries and money. African cities are uniquely marked by disjunctive ows and circuits, but in ways that amplify both the intensity of mobility, and its shadow, xity. The violent reverberations of colonialism in the processes of city living and building ensure that most urban dwellers are entangled in relationships of movement – as protagonists ...

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The third African Cities Reader explores the unholy trinity of land, property and value – the life force of cities everywhere. In an era of late modernity marked by a speculative compulsion that takes on a spectral character as it instigates adventures of city imagineering, deal-making and symbolic reinvestment, the material effects are often displacement, violence, daylight robbery and yet another round of elite seduction. The incessant (re) making of the African city is a game that leaves few untouched or unmoved and literally prepares the ground for the inhabitation of another 400 million urban dwellers over the next two ...

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PublisherThe Funambulist2015
This conversation is the second one recorded live at Studio-X Amman Lab (the first one being with Rahel Aima & Ahmad Makia). Recorded with Dena Qaddumi, it attempts to propose a struggle narrative for Palestine that is not focused on Jerusalem to which many of us contribute, thus participating to a debate mostly focused on the 1967 war. By examining the spatial politics of Jaffa-Tel Aviv, Dena attempts to show that similar “ethonocratic” logic of segregation are also at work in an environment admittedly less militarized. This logic also incorporates the same capitalist mechanisms of gentrification at work in other cities ...

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PublisherSALT2015
Becoming Istanbul is a critical dictionary exploring the problematics of Istanbul. Made up of 152 entries focusing on transformations to the city, clichés used by observers to evaluate these transformations, and commonplace complaints and conditions, Becoming Istanbul invites the reader to question and critique popular discourses. This collection of original writings, seeking to examine Istanbul from different perspectives, has brought together a diverse selection of writers, including architects, musicians, urban planners, orchestral conductors, activists, sociologists, economists, film critics, authors, museum directors, geographers, reporters, anthropologists and historians.

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Inspired by the scholars, activists, and everyday citizens who spoke out, marched, and protested against police killings of African-Americans, we present this collection of short essays that put Black lives at the center of our thinking about architecture and its history.

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PublisherThe Funambulist2018
This conversation with Francesca Russello Ammon is built around her book, Bulldozer: Demolition and Clearance of the Postwar Landscape (2016), which retraces the political history of the bulldozer by the United States during World War II (used in the Pacific War by the SeaBees) and immediately following it in the massive engineering of the U.S. territory in cities and between them. This discussion can act as an addition to the contents featured in The Funambulist 17 (May-June 2018) Weaponized Infrastructure. Francesca Russello Ammon is a cultural historian of urban planning and the built environment. Her research focuses on the social, material, and cultural life ...

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PublisherThe Funambulist2015
This conversation is the first of three recorded in Cairo about Cairo. Beth Stryker and Omar Nagati, through the description of their research and design work, introduce us to the post-revolution city and its multiple forms of informal architectures. We begin by evoking tbe numerous passage ways of Downtown and the work of Cluster to rehabilitate two of them. We then describe these forms of informality, the danger in romanticizing them — by systematically assuming that they advance the common good — and what can be learn from them. We then conclude by problematizing the act of cartographying what was not ...

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Publisher2014
There has been many things written about the urban transformations of Paris orchestrated by Napoleon III’s prefect, the “Baron” Haussmann; many of which address the militarized causes of these transformations, as I often did myself. This aspect of the transformations is admitted by Haussmann himself in his memoirs as part of the strategy. The first part of the 19th-century saw many insurrections and revolutions happening in Paris (1830 revolution, 1832 insurrection, 1848 revolution, etc.) and Napoleon III, after his 1851 coup, was certainly eager to transform Paris to be able to control it. The large avenues and boulevards were thus ...

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PublisherBedford Press2013
Global cities (and their designs in particular) have rested on the paradigm of market-driven development, and have been interpreted as strategic spaces of neoliberal restructuring. Whilst they are now hit by the crisis of this ideology, the situation also offers the opportunity and necessity to imagine another, more social city. Yet designers continue to hold back criticism and proposals. It is, however, time to redefine the role of design for a social city and take action. What is the role of design in the production of urban space? Is it merely an element in the commodified colonisation of social spaces? ...

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PublisherThe Funambulist2015
The Dalieh of Raouche is a large publicly accessible rock situated at the extremity of West Beirut peninsula (see map and photos below). Like many coastal sites in Lebanon, it is currently the object of a private development plan, which tackles many questions about legal property, as well as social, ecological, and archaeological preservation. In December 2014, the Civil Campaign to Protect the Dalieh of Raouche wrote an open-letter to Rem Koolhaas, the master-planner of the project, in order to raise this questions in the public debate. This letter was shared at a scale that went beyond the sole city ...

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PublisherThe Funambulist2015
This conversation with May al-Ibrashy is the last one of a series of twelve recorded in the Levant and Egypt. In it, we discuss the current political situation of Egypt after the 2011 revolution and the 2013 military coup d’état. As she writes, “my new motto [is] if you’re not confused, you’re stupid.” Trying not to fall into stupidity, we thus attempt to question the various problems that creates such a confusion, in particular when it comes to heritage. In this regard, the fire at the Institut d’Egypte that burned thousands of documents in December 2011 is exemplary of a political ...

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Publisherdpr-barcelona2013
Have you ever wondered how one can get up in the middle of the night and move in a pitch-dark room? What makes such nightly excursions possible is the development of a mental image of one’s home that tightly corresponds to the surrounding physical space. But what if one could transfer this awareness from the domestic to the urban sphere? We might then be able to navigate the city with the same confidence that characterizes our domestic movements. While checking-in, liking, sharing and going through Augmented Reality experiences we might be unconsciously contributing to the construction of a nomadic, collective awareness. Simone ...

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PublisherThe Funambulist2014
In this conversation, we discuss about Gustavo Ciriaco’s choreographic work in order to address the politics of movement of the body – what we commonly call “dance” – in the public space. As a base for this discussion, we particularly talk about his piece, entitled “Here whilst we walk,” which consists in inviting a group of people to walk silently in a city while being surrounded by an elastic rubber band. On the contrary of other conversations part of the Latin American podcast series, we remain relatively non-specific for most of the conversation, before finally addressing the specificity of the ...

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PublisherUrbanomic2018
Compiled by Philip Sanderson and mixed by DJ Huysmans, a mix made to accompany the Ballardian Breakfast Briefing virtual launch event for Applied Ballardianism.

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Publisherdpr-barcelona2014
This essay looks at the case of Collective Towns in Iraqi Kurdistan as an example of how State interventions on the ground are often instruments utilised to implement broader political plans. Throughout the 1970s and the 1980s the Iraqi government made full use of spatial planning as a constitutive part of the strategy of “dealing with the Kurdish problem”. Recchia’s argument is that the Ba’ath regime adopted urban planning and space design as social engineering devices in its larger scheme of shaping society into a more homogenous and simplified form. The Iraqi government used the combination of ethnopolitics and a centralised ideology ...

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PublisherThe Funambulist2014
In this conversation that occurred before her presentation at New York’s Left Forum, Tings Chak and I discuss about the historical and contemporary racialized treatment of migrant bodies in North America and Europe. Refused, expelled, marginalized, or detained, the migrant body is a precarious one. Through Ting’s upcoming graphic-essay book, we talk about carceral architecture, in particular the one that embodies the numerous migrant detention centers in Canada. What does that mean at a legal standpoint to be incarcerated not for punishing reasons but for administrative reasons? How does architecture unfold violence upon bodies through its very physicality? What would ...

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PublisherDroste Effect2016
Bulletin #2: Urban Care: Shifting Strategies by Maia Nichols Imagine a grain and a fencer. A grain of rice, a grain of fabric, a grain of smoke. In a discussion with a fencer, the grain matters little. Here, three projects are examined to consider covert hierarchies. A garden bed spells out Zu Spät (too late). A reconfiguration of the Weinheber Monument by a collaborative group based in Vienna lifts up the earth around its base. A video following the Workers Leaving the Googleplex starts tackling the systemic malaise of ranking workers. These projects are considered for what they achieve in approaching the effects of guilt, through interventions ...

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PublisherThe Funambulist2014
Nick Caverly received me in Detroit a day after I arrived in the city whose population and economy has been drastically shrinking for the last decades and is now populated with a multitude of ruins and empty lots. We discuss about the governance of the city that is now piloted by an “Emergency Finance Manager,” who reduced public service to a worrisome level, mostly detrimental to the most impoverished populations of the city. We also talk of the newcomers in the city, the white “creative class,” which, despite a commendable optimism tends to develop an imaginary that omit the existence ...

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PublisherThe Funambulist2014
This conversation with Karim Kattan introduces the art residency he recently created in Jericho. Entitled el-Atlal (the ruins), this residency allows us to discuss about the political strategy that this Palestinian cultural project intends to adopt and, beyond it, also the concept of ruin in Palestine, as well as this very particular place in the Jordan Valley, a “central margin” as Karim says, between Jerusalem and Amman and the Northern and Southern part of the country. Jericho is at a key moment of its extremely long history, experiencing urban and cultural developments that simultaneously allows it to foresee the future of Palestine and also threatens its fragile ...

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The authors reflect on the relationship between labor and technology in urban space where communication, attention, and physical movement generate financial value for a small number of private stakeholders. Online and off, Internet users are increasingly wielded as a resource for economic amelioration, for private capture, and the channels of communication are becoming increasingly inscrutable. Liu and Scholz ask: How does the intertwining of labor and play complicate our understanding of exploitation?

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PublisherThe Funambulist2014
This conversation with Fiona I.B. Ngô focuses on her book, Imperial Blues (2014) that develops a discourse around the simultaneous suppressive and productive aspects of race and sex through a travel in the various geo(chrono)graphies of New York in the 1920s. We talk of the various signs (bodies, objects, spaces) created and worn to reference the imperial vision of that that it is not. We also converse about the movement of bodies, at a transnational level, as much as at the level of the body dancing (“the cops are here, let’s play a waltz!”) without forgetting the movement between various neighborhoods of New ...

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