Places of Nature in Ecologies of Urbanism
ISBN : 978-988-8390-59-5
268 pages, 6″ x 9″, 51 b&w illus.; 1 chart
Also available in Paperback HK$280.00
If twenty-first-century urbanization is understood as a problem, its regional epicenter is the cities in Asia. Facing unprecedented diversity in scale, scope, and environmental dynamics in the Asian urban experience, scholars will need an approach that can truly capture the significance of place and context. The challenge, as this volume illustrates, can be met by the analytic of ecologies of urbanism. Eschewing a rigid, single ecology, the contributors identify multiple forms of nature—in biophysical, cultural, and political terms—that have discernable impact on power relations and human social action. The case studies in this book—including leopards in Mumbai, a network of tubewells in northern India, an island that grows through reclamation in Hong Kong, and a railway continuum linking Khon Kaen and Bangkok—all attest to the versatility of ecologies of urbanism. Guided by urban processes rather than geopolitical boundaries, Places of Nature in Ecologies of Urbanism offers a picture of urban Asia that is composed of varied ecologies of urbanism.
“This intellectually adventurous work displays a deep cultural-ethical sensibility in its close attention to geographically variegated forms of place making. A first-rate contribution to urban scholarship on Asia and beyond.” —Vinay K. Gidwani, Department of Geography, Environment and Society and Institute for Global Studies, University of Minnesota
“This volume derives from a several-year collaborative effort to bring scholars from different disciplines together to reflect on the constructed, shifting, and contested meanings of the forward-slash separating Urban/Natures. The essays in this volume are bold, rigorous, original, and sometimes even witty. Without losing track of the intellectual genealogies that enable their collective effort, the authors in Places of Nature in Ecologies of Urbanism give us new tools for imagining urban Asia’s possible futures.” —William Glover, Department of History, University of Michigan