Urban Dislocations and the Architecture of Diasporas (1900 – present)

Session Convenors

Ralph Ghoche, Barnard College, Columbia University rghoche@barnard.edu

Ignacio G. Galán, Barnard College, Columbia University igalan@barnard.edu

Session Abstract

Cities tend to be chronicled by the achievements of the dominant cultures that were responsible for their rise. Often lost in these narratives, however, are the manifold contributions of non-native newcomers, immigrants, refugees, outsiders, and expatriates who played a formative role in shaping and re-purposing urban environments. Neighborhoods like San Francisco’s Chinatown, or New York’s Loisaida, for example, were refashioned by century-long migrations from Asia and Latin America. They are as much spaces of global exchange and cohabitation as they are discontinuous enclaves; cities within cities. To study these urban enclaves is to challenge what traditional discourses on the city tend to privilege: the continuity between architectural objects and the local contexts within which they are situated.

This session brings to light the paradoxical nature and hybridity of cities, drawing attention to both the economic, cultural, and technological connections and exchanges while also uncovering the ‘disjuncture’ of these urban conditions. We seek papers that delineate the formal and informal processes by which displaced groups have occupied and reshaped existing structures or territories and those that describe the transglobal networks that have facilitated these transformations. Papers can focus on the critical role that individuals, community groups, and activist collectives play in the appropriation, spatial transformation, and re-signification of existing structures and environments.

We are interested in approaches that engage different scales of transformation, from specific buildings and projects to the repurposing of existing neighborhoods; from infrastructural interventions into the urban fabric to the development of wholly new cities.

To offer a paper
Please email your paper proposal direct to the session convenors, details above.

Provide a title and abstract (250 words maximum) for a 25-minute paper (unless otherwise specified), your name and institutional affiliation (if any).

Please make sure the title is concise and reflects the contents of the paper because it will appear online, in social media and in the printed programme.

You should receive an acknowledgement of receipt of your submission within two weeks from the session convenors.

Deadline for submissions: Monday 5 November 2018

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