The Ludic City : Exploring the Potential of Public Spaces book cover
1st Edition

The Ludic City
Exploring the Potential of Public Spaces

ISBN 9780415401807
Published June 4, 2007 by Routledge
248 Pages

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Book Description

This international and illustrated work challenges current writings focussing on the problems of urban public space to present a more nuanced and dialectical conception of urban life.

Detailed and extensive international urban case studies show how urban open spaces are used for play, which is defined and discussed using Caillois' four-part definition – competition, chance, simulation and vertigo. Stevens explores and analyzes these case studies according to locations where play has been observed: paths, intersections, thresholds, boundaries and props.

Applicable to a wide-range of countries and city forms, The Ludic City is a fascinating and stimulating read for all who are involved or interested in the design of urban spaces.

Table of Contents

Introduction: The 'Function' of Urban Public Space  1. A Theorisation of Everyday Urban Social Life  2. Understanding Play in Public  3. The Spatiality of Social Interactions  4. How to Study Play in Cities  5. Paths  6. Intersections  7. Thresholds  8. Boundaries  9. Props  10. The Shape of Urban Play: 1960s Functionalism Revisited  11. The Dialectics of Urban Play: Fun Follows Form, Fun Follows 'Function'

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Quentin Stevens is Lecturer in Planning and Urban Design at the Bartlett School of Planning, University College London. He has a PhD in Urban Design from the University of Melbourne and has studied Architecture and Urban Planning in Melbourne, Berkeley and Chicago. He has also worked as an urban designer and planner in both Australia and the United States and is co-editor of Loose Space: Possibility and Diversity in Urban Life.