Institute of Modern Languages Research
Memories of Future Cities
Memory and Urban Transformation in the South African City
This seed workshop aims to explore a broad range of culture of memory and futurity constructed around the city. The city is 'a machine for thinking, [..] an instrument for understanding the world and the human predicament in it.l (Rykwert) IT is also an ecology of memory made up of imaginary pasts, utopian futures, (re)mediated and palimpsestic memories, a node where heterogeneous cultures, the built environment, the monument and the ruin converge and overlap in unexpected and productive new manners. The urban space emerges here as an axiomatic site, a Bakhtinian chronotype where past and future are entangled and the present is characterised by dissonance, simultaneity and flow. Themes addressed by this workshop include Eco-cities and reconciliation, City and spectacle, Memory, memorialization and urban transformation, Utopian and post-utopian cities, Media, art and temporality, and the afterlife of cities.