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AP/SOSC 3735 6.00 Asian Cities In Context

AP/SOSC 3735 6.00 Asian Cities In Context

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AP/SOSC 3735 6.00

Asian Cities In Context

The course considers themes in postcolonial urbanism with reference to a number of East and Southeast Asian cities, including Jakarta, Hong Kong, Taipei, Seoul, Shanghai, and Bangkok, and addresses the
primary issues confronting postcolonial cities, with an emphasis on reading the city and examining the experience of urban life. The course begins by outlining some major theoretical issues – including identity, tradition/modernity, nationalism, citizenship, exclusion, and heritage – which underlie the discussion of postcolonial cities and which emphasize the experience of the postcolonial city as a space of encounters, difference, negotiation and visual expression. The class then examines the origins of Asian urban forms and the urban settlements of colonialism and considers the urban architecture of colonialism for the ways in which colonial planners sought to inscribe the power of the metropole in the cities of the colonies. What legacy did this architecture leave for the planners and governors and residents of post-Independence cities? How have the post-Independence planner, governors and residents in their turn attempted to rein-scribe their cities with symbols of their Independence and nationalism? The rest of the course considers these themes arising from postcolonial concerns with the city, including nationalism, migration and globalization. With regard to all of these themes, we discuss their impact on the shaping of the city and the experience of the city, with specific examples from the readings and with reference to films viewed in class.