Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Manuel Castells - Space of Flows, Space of Places: Materials For a Theory of Urban-ism in the Information Age - 2004

by Aleksandra Furman

The Majority of population is living in urban areas. Cities are concentrated disproportionately and create multi-centered urban areas. Communication (Internet, telephone, etc.) allows for concentration and decentralization. This creates a new geography of global network. Social relationships are either individual or communal. There is a shift from the patriarchal family unit to networks of individual units. The network enterprise is a new form of economic activity. It is comprised of decentralized yet coordinated spaces. The ability to work from home is making this change.
Urban areas are increasingly becoming more multi-ethnic/cultural. This creates a more global criminal economy since it is rooted in the urban fabric. This creates a rise in violence and paranoia. This creates breakdowns of communication between individuals and cultures and financial classes. Because of the strong reaction to the replication of spaces i suburban sprawl, urban residences become strong expressions of local life. This creates a double movement which is inclusion into trans-territorial networks, and exclusion by spatial separation. The urban social movements have mutated into polarized interests. One being on the local community scale, where people feel the need to affirm their rights to live in their neighborhoods. The other social movement is on the global environmental scale.

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