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The contradictions of participatory architecture and Empire

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  07 July 2014


There is nothing, no ‘naked life’, no external standpoint, that can be posed outside this field permeated by money, nothing escapes money.

In 2009, an international masterclass at the Berlage Institute studied a street market in a deprived Rotterdam neighbourhood, the Afrikaanderplein. Headed by Teddy Cruz and supported by Jeanne van Heeswijk and Miguel Robles-Duran – three socially and politically committed architects and artists – the group produced a critique of the tight control and regulation of the market by authorities. The group's proposals were, basically, to liberalise and deregulate the market.

Whether the Afrikaanderplein market is a case which merits deregulation depends, of course, on the specific conditions the group detected in the area. More important here, however, is that the proposals appear, at least superficially, to contrast the anti-neoliberal and radical positions of the three individuals directing the group.

Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2014 

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