A Reflexive Reading of Urban Space: 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

A Reflexive Reading of Urban Space

1st Edition

By Mona A. Abdelwahab


230 pages | 120 B/W Illus.

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Hardback: 9781409452287
pub: 2018-02-22
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pub: 2018-02-13
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Providing a critique of the concepts attached to the representation of urban space, this ground-breaking book formulates a new theory of space, which understands the dynamic interrelations between physical and social spaces while tracing the wider urban context. It offers a new tool to approach the reading of these interrelations through reflexive reading strategies that identify singular reading fragments of the different spaces through multiple reader-time-space relations. The strategies proposed in the volume seek to develop an integrative reading of urban space through recognition of the singular (influenced by discourse, institution, etc.); and temporal (influenced by reading perspective in space and time), thereby providing a relational perspective that goes beyond the paradox of place in between social and physical space, identifying each in terms of relationships oscillating between the conceptual, the physical and social content, and the context. In conclusion, the book suggests that space/place can be read through sequential fragments of people, place, context, mind, and author/reader. Operating at different scales between conceptual space and reality, the sequential reading helps the recognition of multiplicity and the dynamics of place as a transformational process without hierarchy or classification.

Table of Contents

A Threshold

Part One - Three Reading Spaces

Chapter one - Approaching a reading space

Chapter two - Arché-deconstruction

Chapter three - Cairo-Khōra

A Turning Point

Part Two - Three Reflexive Readings

Chapter four - The Cultural Park for Children

Chapter five - Social Space

Chapter six - Arché-urban space

To be continued…..


About the Author

Mona A. Abdelwahab is an Assistant Professor in Architecture, Department of Architecture and Environmental Design at the Academy for Science, Technology and Maritime Transport, Egypt. She received her PhD in Architecture from Newcastle University, UK, where she is a visiting research fellow. She followed her post-doc studies at the Department of Spatial Planning, University of Groningen, NL, where she co-founded ‘YA-AESOP-Booklet Series: Conversations In-Planning’. She is also cofounder and managing editor of ‘Arcplan’: Arabic cities planning e-journal.

About the Series

New Directions in Planning Theory

New Directions in Planning Theory
Ashgate's series, New Directions in Planning Theory, develops and disseminates theories and conceptual understandings of spatial and physical planning which address such challenges as uncertainty, diversity and incommensurability. Planning theories range across a wide spectrum, from questions of explanation and understanding, to normative or predictive questions of how planners should act and what future places should look like. These theories include procedural theories of planning. While these have traditionally been dominated by ideas about rationality, in addition to this, the series opens up to other perspectives and also welcomes theoretical contributions on substantive aspects of planning. Other theories to be included in the series may be concerned with questions of epistemology or ontology; with issues of knowledge, power, politics, subjectivation; with social and/or environmental justice; with issues of morals and ethics. Planning theories have been, and continue to be, influenced by other intellectual fields, which often imbue planning theories with awareness of and sensitivity to the multiple dimensions of planning practices. The series editors particularly encourage inter- and trans-disciplinary ideas and conceptualisations.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
POLITICAL SCIENCE / Public Policy / City Planning & Urban Development