The City as Target: 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

The City as Target

1st Edition

Edited by Ryan Bishop, Gregory Clancey, John W. Phillips


336 pages

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Bringing together scholars from a diverse range of disciplines, The City as Target provides a sustained and critical response to the relationship between the concept of targeting (in its many forms) and notions of understanding, imagining and shaping the urban.

Among the many spatial and graphic terms used to describe cities in urban studies, the word target is rarely encountered. Though equally spatial, it differs from these others by implying some motive force, and, more than that, a force with some intentionality. To target is to aim, to project, and ultimately to impact. It suggests a space of violence, or at least action, or movement resulting in displacement, which most other terms do not. In that sense it is useful, underused, and perhaps revelatory.

Rather than approach the city as simply a site of growth, processes, and developments, the contributors to this volume treat it as the recipient of attentions. The work draws on a wide variety of geographical sites and historic monuments in order to explore this concept, examining and challenging current urban theories. It seeks to highlight both the power of The Global City and the current vulnerability and fragility of urban culture, exploring the city as a recipient and a culprit in relation to issues including terrorism and urban warfare, the latest cyclical failure of global financial markets, and the relatively new spectre of environmental unsustainability.

Offering a unique and relevant contribution to the literature, this work will be of great interest to scholars of urban theory, international relations, postcolonial politics and military studies.

Table of Contents

1. Cities as Targets Ryan Bishop, Gregory Clancey, and John Phillips 2. ‘But with Malice Aforethought’: Cities and the Natural History of Hatred Nigel Thrift 3. Targeting the Imaginist City John Armitage 4. The Refugee War Eyal Weizman 5. Theme Park Archipelago: Convergences of War, Simulation and Entertainment in Urban Targeting Steve Graham 6. Empire or Imperialism: Implications for a "New" Politics of Resistance Pal Ahluwalia 7 . The City-as-Target: Targeting the City Verena Andermatt Conley 8. Tokyo: Water, Earthquake, and Island Universe Suzuki Hiroyuki 9. Vast Clearings: Emergency, Technology, and American De-Urbanization, 1930-1945 Gregory Clancey 10. Concealment and Exposure: Imagining London after the Great Fire Li Shiqiao 11. Moscow: Fortress City Irina Aristarkhova 12. Ars Memoria and Unbombing Tjebbe van Tijen 13. London: The Imperial Target Rajeev Patke 14. : Keizu to Nendaiki: Making and Erasing History in Tsukuba Science City at the Edge of Empire Sharon Traweek 15. The City and the Economy of "Losing": Targeting Competitive Bodies in an Era of Global Competition Robbie Goh 16. The Absorptive Assemblage Jordan Crandall 17. "The Target is the People": Representations of the Village in Modernization and National Security Doctrine Nick Cullather

About the Editors

Ryan Bishop isProfessor of Global Art and Politics and co-Director of the Winchester Centre for Global Futures in Art Design & Media, Winchester School of Art, University of Southampton

Gregory Clancey is an Associate Professor of History at the National University of Singapore, and the Master of Tembusu College.

John W P Phillips is Associate Professor in the Department of English Language and Literature at The National University of Singapore.

About the Series

Postcolonial Politics

‘Postcolonial Politics’ is a series that publishes books that lie at the intersection of politics and postcolonial theory. That point of intersection once barely existed; its recent emergence is enabled, first, because a new form of ‘politics’ is beginning to make its appearance. Intellectual concerns that began life as a (yet unnamed) set of theoretical interventions from scholars largely working within the ‘New Humanities’ have now begun to migrate into the realm of politics. The result is politics with a difference, with a concern for the everyday, the ephemeral, the serendipitous and the unworldly. Second, postcolonial theory has raised a new set of concerns in relation to understandings of the non-West. At first these concerns and these questions found their home in literary studies, but they were also, always, political. Edward Said’s binary of ‘Europe and its other’ introduced us to a ‘style of thought’ that was as much political as it was cultural as much about the politics of knowledge as the production of knowledge, and as much about life on the street as about a philosophy of being, A new, broader and more reflexive understanding of politics, and a new style of thinking about the non-Western world, make it possible to ‘think’ politics through postcolonial theory, and to ‘do’ postcolonial theory in a fashion which picks up on its political implications.

Postcolonial Politics attempts to pick up on these myriad trails and disruptive practices. The series aims to help us read culture politically, read ‘difference’ concretely, and to problematise our ideas of the modern, the rational and the scientific by working at the margins of a knowledge system that is still logocentric and Eurocentric. This is where a postcolonial politics hopes to offer new and fresh visions of both the postcolonial and the political.

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