[Kaupunkitutkimus] Architecture of War - Tallinn april 2013 - Call for Papers open now

Sampo Ruoppila ruoppila at gmail.com
Thu Jun 28 13:55:59 EEST 2012

10th Urban and Landscape Days

Call for papers

April 26-27, 2013

Faculty of Architecture
Estonian Academy of Arts
Tallinn, Estonia



The international scientific conference "Between architecture of war
and military urbanism" is the 10th edition of the annual series of
Urban and Landscape Days. Organized by the Estonian Academy of Arts,
Faculty of Architecture, the event brings together architecture,
planning, landscape studies, critical urban studies and art.

The idea behind the theme of 2013 is to facilitate a creative and
critical interrogation of links between the political economy of war,
the transfer of military practices and technologies to urban realm,
and the ‘architectures of war’, such as military bases, fortifications
 and refugee camps, which comprise a largely forgotten topic in
planning and architecture.

The conference is of interest to urban scholars, architectural
theorists and historians, architects, political geographers,
sociologists, and others from the related fields of theory and
practice.  To explore links between theory and practice, we invite a
broad variety of presentations from scientific papers to artistic
research and non-standard forms.

The language of the conference is English.

Abstract submission deadline is 1 October 2012.


Conference theme

The concept of boundary has been central in theorizing the relation
between war, politics, and civil life. Is there a clear-cut
distinction between these states? Are the boundaries blurred and to
what extent? These questions have been explored from Machiavelli to
Schmitt and Foucault.

The aim of the conference is to interrogate these relations in the
urban realm. Architecture of war and military urbanism represent two
opposite conceptualizations of the boundary. Military spatial practice
 can be then seen as integrating sharp separations and smooth flows.
As  a form of social practice, it also leads to the question of the
boundary between the military and the civil. The conference focuses on
 exploring this question in relation to urban built environments,
spatial technologies, and political economy of land.

Various types of 'interdictory space' are common features of urban
design and architecture in almost any context. From medieval city
walls to closed cities of Soviet Union, from Berlin's Mauer to the
Israel-Palestina wall, military and civil urbanisms are inherently
intertwined. In drones, we can see an immediate technological transfer
 between war zones and civil urban life. Civil technologies and
light-weight mobile constructions (such as Buckminister Fuller's
geodesic dome) may be adopted in war conditions. Such seemingly
politically neutral technological inventions have been used both by
Drop City inhabitants and by the US Army. And land is the most
contested site of 21st century politics – and war. From landgrabs of
Global South to Occupy movements, the boundary between war, politics,
and civil life is profoundly related to the contested question who
owns and who uses the land.



We invite submissions to the following tracks:

1/ Urban built environments

Strongholds, fortifications and military bases structure the patterns
of urban development in long term. Shelters, field hospitals, or
refugee camps represent instant architectural forms. In what ways do
these planning, architectural, and engeneering interventions structure
 – in long-term and short-term perspective – the everyday life? How
does the function of these built structures change from military to
civil? How is the civil architecture used for military purposes? And
how is the very notion of the 'civil' architecture structured by the
notion of the 'military' architecture?

2/ Spatial technology

Spatial technology is the platform of profound interpenetration of the
 military and the civil. Surveillance and urban combat technologies
and  practices that used to belong to cutting-edge war technology are
increasingly deployed in civil policing and control. Civil and
home-made tools are transformed and utilized for the purpose of attack
 and defense. How does technology shape the organization of military
planning, management and labour? How does technology shape the
proximity and distance between the military and the civil space? And
what is the relationship between war and cyberwar?

3/ Political economy of land

War itself can be studied as a form of spatial fix. But to equate war
with spatial fix as such would be to disregard the complexities in the
 relationship of political geography and military practice. In what
way  does war structure the conflicting claims on land? And along what
 lines do conflicting land claims lead to military conflicts? What
are  the specificities of the contemporary political economy of war?
What  is the boundary and interpenetration between military and
non-military  spatial fixes?


Keynote speakers

Stephen Graham / Professor of Cities and Society, School of
Architecture, Planning and Landscape, Newcastle University, Newcastle
upon Tyne
author of Splintering Urbanism (2001, with Graham Marvin) and Cities
Under Siege: The New Military Urbanism (2010)

Steven Flusty / Associate Professor, York University, Toronto
author of Building Paranoia (1994) and De-Coca-Colonization: Making
the Globe from the Inside Out (2003)

Donovan Wylie / Photographer, member of Magnum Photos
author of The Maze (2004), British Watchtowers (2007) and Outposts (2011)



The conference will take place in Tallinn, Estonia. The questions of
architecture of war and military urbanism are integral parts of the
lived spaces of the country and the city.  During the Cold War, there
were two closed cities – Sillamäe and Paldiski – in the territory of
the present-day Estonia. The two largest Estonian islands, Saaremaa
and Hiiumaa, were categorized as a restricted territory for almost 50
years. As far as the city of Tallinn is concerned, its morphology is
structured by the strongly preserved medieval wall. And the large part
 of the city waterfront consists of mostly obsolete military
landscape,  closed off as the military border zone during the Cold
War. Having  become the sites of real estate speculation, the 'civil'
regeneration  of military wasteland stands for one of the major urban
planning  conflict in Tallinn. The post-conference excursion will
offer a chance  to visit some of these places.



Please upload your abstract (of no more than 500 words), contact
information, and brief bio to the conference site
www.architectureofwar.com no later than 1 October 2012.

Please visit the conference site or contact the organizers at
architectureofwar at artun.ee for further information.

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