[URBANTH-L]CFP: Economy of Fascination - Thematic Production of Postmodern Urban Landscapes (Heidelberg)

Angela Jancius jancius at ohio.edu
Mon Aug 6 15:08:35 EDT 2007


Dear All,

On behalf of the Department of Geography at the University of Heidelberg 
it is my pleasure to invite you to attend the international 
symposium "Economy of Fascination - Thematic Production of Post-modern 
Urban Landscapes" in Heidelberg from November 8 to 10, 2007.

Yours sincerely,
Heiko Schmid

Description & program:
"Economy of Fascination - Thematic Production of Postmodern Urban 

During the last decades and in the course of economic and cultural 
globalisation most metropolises have undergone far-reaching 
transformations towards an increasing commercialisation, theming, and 
focus on entertainment. One of the consequences of urban governance is 
that competences and responsibilities have been transferred to private and 
semi-state actors, while other consequences are that supermarkets have 
been turned into urban entertainment centres, pedestrian zones into 
festival marketplaces, and traditional housing areas have been converted 
to gated communities.

Festivalisation, theming, and hyper reality are the catchwords of a fast-
paced development which is increasingly reducing everyday "reality" and 
replacing it with a "culture of simulation". As early as 1992 SORKIN 
announced the end of public space and the transition from reality to 
virtuality. Experience and reality are being virtualised, produced, and 
simulated but also manipulated, monitored, and controlled. Meanwhile, one 
can speak even of an "Economy of Fascination" to describe the attention 
drawing tendencies of theming and entertainment that have found their way 
into everyday life and that are more and more the determining factors of 
urban landscapes.

"Economy of Fascination" is consequently the title of an international 
symposium at the Internationales Wissenschaftsforum in Heidelberg from 
November 8 to 11, 2007 that will focus on the increasing 
commercialisation, theming, and entertainment character of urban 
landscapes. Several international academics like Michael Sorkin, Mark 
Gottdiener, John Urry, Scott Lash, Neil Smith, and Michael Dear will give 
keynote lectures, but the main goal of the symposiums is to bring together 
senior academics and young scholars of different disciplines to 
intensively discuss topics of postmodern urbanism.

Program of the symposium:

Opening ceremony:
Thursday, November 08, 2007
Location: Alte Aula, Grabengasse 1

17.30: Musical prelude

17.40: Welcome address and opening of the symposium
Heiko Schmid (Department of Geography, University of Heidelberg)

18.00: Back To Zero - Theming Thanatos
Michael Sorkin (Director of the Graduate Urban Design Program, City 
College of New York)

19.00: General statement for discussion

19.20: Musical finale

20.00: Reception at the Alte Aula


Friday, November 09, 2007
Location: Internationales Wissenschaftsforum Heidelberg, Hauptstraße 242

Section 1: Postmodern Urbanity

8.30: Introduction
Heiko Schmid (Department of Geography, University of Heidelberg)

8.45: Reading Postmodern Urbanism
Michael Dear (Department of Geography, University of Southern California)

9.30: Aesthetics and Design: Perceptions in the Postmodern Periphery
Ludger Basten (Department of Geography, University of Bochum)

10.15: Coffee break

Section 2: Governance and Urban Dynamics

10.45: "The Most Dangerous Knack": Function, Fetish and Fascination in the 
Built Environment
Neil Smith (Center for Place, Culture and Politics, City University of New 

11.30: The City Is Back (In Our Minds)
Jacques Levy (École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne)

12.15: Culture and urban renewal. Late modern trends in urban regeneration 
and governance
Gerald Wood (Department of Geography, University of Münster)

13.00: Lunch

Section 3: Theming and Urban Semiotics

15.00: Urban Realities; Urban Simulations: Theming, Postmodernism, and 
Everyday Urban Life
Mark Gottdiener (Department of Sociology, University at Buffalo, NY)

15.45: "Urban textures" - Conceptual notes on the relation between 
language and city
Ingo Warnke (Department of Germanistic Studies, University of Kassel)
Ulrike Gerhard (Department of Geography, University of Würzburg)

16.30: Coffee break

17.00: Strategic Stagings of Urbanity: Urban Images in Films and Film 
Clips in Urban Development
Anke Strüver (Department of Geography, University of Münster)
Sybille Bauriedl (Department of Geography, University of Hamburg)


Saturday, November 10, 2007
Location: Internationales Wissenschaftsforum Heidelberg, Hauptstraße 242

Section 4: Urban and Semiotic Economies

8.30: Economies of Excess and Global Climate Change
John Urry (Director of the Centre for Mobilities Research, Department of 
Sociology, Lancaster University)

9.15: Cultural Geographies of Economies
Christian Berndt (Department of Geography, University of Frankfurt)
Marc Boeckler (Department of Geography, University of Eichstätt)

10.00: Coffee break

Section 5: Cultural and regional examples

10.30: Who is running the show? Dubai's grandiose projects from a 
sustainable development perspective
Marc Lavergne (CNRS, Université Lyon 3)

11.15: Urban Themescapes in Present China
Dieter Hassenpflug (Department of European Urbanism, University of Weimar)

12.00: The urban staging of politics - ideology & urban architectural 
planning in Brazil. A semiotic-actionist approach
Woody Sahr (Program for post-graduation in Geografia, Universidade Federal 
do Paraná, Curitiba, Brazil)

12.45: Lunch

14.45: "A hot place to be"? Culture and tourism in the Ruhr Area
Achim Prossek (Department of Geography, University of Dortmund)

15.30: Inscribing Values into the Urban Landscapes using Flagship Museums
Noam Shoval (Department of Geography, Hebrew University of Jerusalem)

16.15: Coffee break

Section 6: Resume

16.45: Statement and synopsis from the chairs: discussion and resume

17.45: End of the symposium


The symposium is open to all disciplines and academics - young scholars 
and interested discussants are most welcomed. A small conference fee of 40 
? will be charged.

More information at http://www.geog.uni-heidelberg.de/fascination/pdf/flyer.pdf

Contact and registration:
Dr. Heiko Schmid
Department of Geography
University of Heidelberg
Berliner Straße 48
69120 Heidelberg
Tel.: 06221/544590
Email: heiko.schmid at geog.uni-heidelberg.de

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