be strategic. be-e strategic. s-t-r-a-t-e-g-i-and-c.

…interventions in places become self-constitutive acts. The state intervenes to control space, to dictate the meaning of urbanity, to shape the evolution of the public sphere, and to suppress contending ideologies. It does so by strategically placing squares, parks, statues and monuments, cultural centers, and public buildings; by monitoring architectural styles; by dictating urban design and development agendas.[1]

One quote that didn't make it into my paper for Schoeberlein's Culture Wars, but which reminds me at this juncture of the usefulness of the concrete. Although Çinar is operating more at the level of urban design here, what we do as architects is generally, I think, a similar act of strategic spatial arrangement, only deployed at a different scale. I've been wading somewhat self-indulgently (and unapologetically) in cultural theory and all that talk doesn't necessarily inspire doing or making...which is why it's safe and indulgent and warm and fuzzy. Okay, time to get strategic and specific.

[1] Alev Çinar. Modernity, Islam, and Secularism in Turkey: Bodies, Places and Time. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2005: 101.

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