1st Edition

Hyper City The Symbols Side of Urbanism

Edited By Peter J.M. Nas, Annemarie Samuels Copyright 2006
    256 Pages
    by Routledge

    266 Pages
    by Routledge

    First published in 2006. Cities are sites of multiple meanings and symbols, ranging from statues and street names to festivals and architecture. Some­ times the symbolic side of urbanism is so strong that it outshines reality - then we speak of hypercity. Urban symbolic ecology and hypercity studies are relatively new fields that deal with the production, distribution and consumption of symbols and meanings in urban space, timely concerns in an era of increasing globalization and competition between mega-urban regions. This volume presents a detailed introduction to the new fields, followed by case studies of the cultural layer of symbolism in Brussels (Belgium), Cape Town (South Africa), Cuenca (Ecuador), Delft (The Netherlands), Kingston (Jamaica), Ljubljana (Slovenia), Paris (France) and cities in Italy and Indonesia. It amply demonstrates that the time has come for urban symbolic ecology and hypercity studies to be included in regular urban studies training in the fields of anthropology, sociology, social geography and architecture.

    1. Urban symbolic ecology and the hypercity: State of the art and challenges for the future 2. ‘Megaproyecto El Barranco’ in Cuenca, Ecuador: Architects and their role in local representations 3. The Italian skyline: Family towers as elements in urban symbolism 4. Looking back, forward or up? Urban symbolism and the politics of race in Jamaica’s Redemption Song 5. Power of remembrance, supremacy of oblivion: History of the ‘National Monuments’ in Ljubljana 6. Sign of the times: Symbolic change around Indonesian independence 7. Under the tablecloth: Exploring symbolism in central Cape Town 8. The contra-dance: Rapping and the art of symbolic resistance in the Parisian banlieue 9. Selling the city: Representations of a transitional urban community 10. Brussels as a symbol: Controversial images of the capital of Europe 11. The use of symbols in city marketing: The case of Delft


    Peter J. M. Nas is an urban anthropologist and Professor in the Socio-cultural Aspects of the Built Environment in Indonesia at Leiden University, the Netherlands. Annemarie Samuels is an MA student in Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology at Leiden University, The Netherlands.