The morphogenesis of an African regional capital

This book deals with the planning culture and architectural endeavours that shaped the model space of French colonial Dakar, a prominent city in West Africa. With a focus on the period from the establishment of the city in the mid-nineteenth century until the interwar years, our involvement with the design of Dakar as a regional capital reveals a multiplicity of 'top-down' and 'bottom-up' dynamics. These include a variety of urban politics, policies, practices and agencies, and complex negotiations at both the physical and conceptual levels. The study of the extra-European planning history of Europe has been a burgeoning field in scholarly literature, especially in the last few decades. There is a clear tendency within this literature, however, to focus on the more privileged colonies in the contemporary colonial order of preference, such as British India and the French colonies in North Africa. Colonial urban space in sub-Saharan Africa has accordingly been addressed less. With a rich variety of historical material and visual evidence, the book incorporates both primary and secondary sources, collected from multilateral channels in Europe and Senegal. It includes an analysis of a variety of planning and architectural models, both metropolitan and indigenous. Of interest to scholars in history, geography, architecture, urban planning, African studies and Global South studies – this book is also one of the pioneers in attesting to the connection between the French colonial doctrines of assimilation and association and French colonial planning and architectural policies in sub-Saharan Africa.

It is increasingly clear that, alongside the spectacular forms of justice activism, the actually existing just city results from different everyday practices of performative politics that produce transformative trajectories and alternative realities in response to particular injustices in situated contexts. The massive diffusion of urban gardening practices (including allotments, community gardens, guerrilla gardening and the multiple, inventive forms of gardening the city) deserve special attention as experiential learning and in-becoming responses to spatial politics, able to articulate different forms of power and resistance to the current state of unequal distribution of benefits and burdens in the urban space. While advancing their socio-environmental claims, urban gardeners make evident that the physical disposition of living beings and non-living things can both determine and perpetuate injustices or create justice spaces.

In so doing, urban gardeners question the inequality-biased structuring and functioning of social formations (most notably urban deprivation, lack of public decision and engagement, and marginalisation processes); and conversely create (or allow the creation of) spaces of justice in contemporary cities.

This book presents a selection of contributions investigating the possibility and capability of urban gardeners to effectively tackle spatial injustice; and it offers the readers sound, theoretically grounded reflections on the topic. Building upon on-the-field experiences in European cities, it presents a wide range of engaged scholarly researches that investigate whether, how and to what extent urban gardening is able to contrast inequalities and disparities in living conditions.

Transnationality and urban ideas in Africa and Palestine
Editors: Liora Bigon and Yossi Katz

The present collection is intended as a study of European planning ideas in the form of garden city concepts and practices in their broadest sense, and the ways these were transmitted, diffused and diverted in various colonial territories and situations. The socio-political, geographical and cultural implications of the processes are analysed here by means of cases from the global South, namely from French and British colonial territories in Africa as well as from Ottoman and British Mandate Palestine. The focus on the extra-European planning history of Europe – particularly in Africa and Palestine in the context of the garden city – is unprecedented in research literature, which tends to concentrate on the global North. Our focus on transnational aspects of the garden city requires a study of frameworks and documentation that extend beyond national borders. The present collection is composed of chapters written by an international network of specialists whose comparative views and critical approaches challenge the more conventional, Eurocentric, narrative relating to garden cities. A guiding principle that runs through this collection is that the spread of garden city ideas into the selected colonial territories was not uni-directional, considering the ‘traditional', reductive, centre-periphery analytical framework that characterises urban studies. This spread of ideas – by nature an uncontrolled process – was rather diffusive, crossing complex and multiple frontiers, and sometimes including quite unexpected ‘flows'.

. This section predominantly focuses on the impact of what MacLaran and Williams (2003) call entrepreneurial forms of urban planning within Irish cities. The chapter then analyses current approaches to urban planning practice, with a critical focus on the continuity of threads from the economic boom of the past into the present. In calling for a repositioning of notions of community and the common good as central elements of urban planning practice, the final part of the chapter draws on a number of broader urban theories, including concepts of ‘the right to the city

in Spacing Ireland
Segregationist insights

segregation on a racial basis, to various degrees, could be regarded as a ‘default’ situation. This chapter illustrates both the site-relatedness of this situation in early colonial Dakar and its inter-colonial, transnational facets. It examines, in great detail and using rich visual records, the relationship between toponymic issues and sanitary considerations in urban planning there. It also examines the

in French colonial Dakar

A brief survey of the impact of inter-war economic change and urban planning in colonial territories must be selective. This chapter takes a ‘top down’ approach, drawing on the records of colonial government. The danger is that colonial subjects appear as mere economic instruments rather than actors in their own right. In an effort to overcome this, the

in The French empire between the wars

. Initiatives to beautify factories were embodied in the City Beautiful and the Garden City Movements, which began to focus attention on the importance of coordinated urban planning. Although their design ideals differed, the City Beautiful and Garden City Movements’ common aim was to create high-status, respectable communities through beauty in architecture and urban design. The City Beautiful Movement in the USA, initially associated with the celebrated designs for the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago by the architect Daniel Burnham and landscape architect

in The factory in a garden
Abstract only

law. Efforts were made to improve the city by renovating buildings and monuments and restoring green areas in central Palermo. Better public transport and illumination of the city were other 76 CULTURAL WARFARE AND TRUST examples. One of the architects at the Division for Urban Planning described the years under Orlando as a period of great expansion. One major achievement of Orlando’s policy was the elaboration of a new urban plan for Palermo – the first since 1962. After years of uncontrolled urban expansion and abuse of construction licences – during the so

in Cultural warfare and trust
Abstract only

imperial power which it manifested – to the surrounding area. 25 Urban plans and morphology gave physical shape to these acts of colonial discourse. Most of the colonial authorities’ planned towns existed on paper before they were laid out on the ground, and their rigidly bounded and regimented orthogonal spaces frequently ignored the local physical reality of steep slopes, gullies and flood-prone land. For

in Imperial spaces
Urban geographies of war after 1945

spatial ­characteristics. The very qualities that characterised places like Luton as a typical British town were ­reinterpreted as s­ ignifiers of their vulnerability to fire. The ‘inherent susceptibility’ of towns and areas to fires was reiterated, casting incendiary attacks as an urban and architectural problem which could best be tackled by ­collaboration between town planners, architects and fire service officials. By combining the expertise of these fields, civil defence, ­fi refighting and urban planning were brought together to create a map which ‘defines the

in Architectures of survival