There is an urgency to think about and create knowledge of invisible and routine, persisting and emergent discriminatory practices in urban space. With a focus on current debates, this course explores feminist theory and emancipatory practice in the context of architecture, design, critical urban theory and geography.
Gender is a central domain of social and political life. It is a category of experiencing space and performing identity. At the same time, it is a label for bodies, infrastructural and architectural spaces (aesthetically and programmatically) that influences normative and nonconformist everyday practices. Urban space is, in many ways, the physical congealing of power dynamics into the built environment. It is a lens through which to analyze who has access to public space and commons, to transportation, spaces of leisure, safe neighborhoods, and clean air and water. The city is both a stage for the play of power structures and gendered dynamics, as well as an actor who distributes resources and enables or disables access.
Emancipatory practices are manifold and creative. They reach their peak in visibility and voice when taken to urban space, into the streets. The current political climate has in many ways heightened the nature of public space as a contested sphere along the lines of contemporary urban gender issues.
This course has a theoretical, an inquiry-based and a methodological component. It is intended to bring together students from different departments in an interdisciplinary approach to complex, intersectional issues, and to constitute a platform for exchange and critical reflection.
- An understanding of interdisciplinary approaches between Urban Studies and Gender Studies
- Skills in participant and spatial observation and visual thinking through short research assignments and the final project (sensory essay)
- The ability to use these skills in the development of independent research projects
Soziologie, Gender Studies, Architektur
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