The Shape of the City presents updated essays on architecture and urbanity, deconstructing the common approach to the history of the city – mainly Eurocentric, American, male, divided between public and private initiatives – by offering newly built narratives in which the main protagonists are not the usual suspects. Tom Avermaete addresses the dichotomy between the Global South and the Global North by presenting the experiments in modernity undertaken in Casablanca and Chandigarh; Hilde Heynen explores the latent dichotomy in the ideology of the two spheres, through an awareness of the presence of gender patterns in the shape of the city; Sarah Whiting reveals how economics defines politics, culture and society in the American context, showing how Chicago is being transformed through demolition, stressing the possibilities that a renewed, contemporary form of civic society could foster. Finally, Vittorio Magnago Lampugnani explores a methodological proposal of presenting what are the broad conditions that shape our cities, by going deep into determinations and dependencies ranging from environmental and technological conditions to social issues and cultural manifestations.

This publication is the result of the keynote lectures presented in April 2016, in the scope of the IST PhD Programme in Architecture.

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