New Geographies, 1: After Zero

New Geographies, 1: After Zero

by Stephen Ramos (Editor)


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Design disciplines are challenged by the condition of the zero point. “Zero-context,” “cities from scratch,” and “zero-carbon” developments all force designers to tackle fundamental questions regarding the strategic relevance and impact of a design intervention. As much as the zero point presents naïve innocence and embodies contradictory notions, it also creates a ground for doubt, self-critique, and rejuvenation for architecture and urbanism. As cities are built before they can even be imagined, what do these projects suggest for the design disciplines? Rather than reductive aestheticization or total rejection, what are possible critical ways to reflect on this condition? Beyond a possible focus on the ambitions of these projects, it is important to see them as symptomatic of a much broader condition within contemporary architecture and urbanism. Along with the challenges inherent in the zero point, perhaps more meaningful are the provocations of the “after the zero” condition, which clearly marks the need to seriously explore fundamental inquiries regarding form and context (physical, social, political). After Zero is an opportunity to imagine alternative futures and a revitalized project for the city.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781934510209
Publisher: Harvard University, Graduate School of Design
Publication date: 09/30/2009
Series: Graduate School of Design New Geographies Series
Pages: 160
Product dimensions: 7.90(w) x 10.00(h) x 0.40(d)

About the Author

Stephen Ramos is a Post-Doctoral Fellow at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government.

Neyran Turan is an Assistant Professor of Architecture at Rice University.

Table of Contents

  • Ex-nihilo Urbanism
    Albert Pope

  • Risk Society’s ‘Cosmopolitan Moment’
    Ulrich Beck

  • Architecture as Framework: The Project of the City and the Crisis of Neo-liberalism
    Pier Vittorio Aureli and Martino Tattara

  • The Zero-Ground of Politics: Musings on the Post-Political City
    Erik Swyngedouw

  • Cable
    Keller Easterling

  • Mimetic Utopias: Themeing and Consumerism on China’s Suburban Frontier
    Thomas J. Campanella

  • Siteless Geography
    Francois Blanciak

  • Arabian Tabula Rasa: Abu Dhabi’s Urban Imaginary
    Yasser Elshestawy

  • Starting Points: Gilles Clément and the Recuperation of Space
    Matthew Gandy

  • Recovering “The Future”: A New City in the Gulf
    Behrang Behin

  • Meltdown: Thawing Geographies in the Arctic
    Lola Sheppard and Mason White

  • Homogeneity: From Scratch, Retrofitted
    Joseph Grimma

  • Geography and Planning: A New Version of an Old Story?
    Peter Hall

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