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Conference presentation on imagining urban futures through performances

Conference presentation on imagining urban futures through performances

Nevena Škrbić Alempijević participated in the annual conference of the Australian Anthropological Society (AAS), which took place from 24 November to 1 December 2021 on a virtual platform. Within the panel “Seeing like a city? Reimagining urban anthropology”, she presented a paper entitled “Imagining Urban Futures through Performances: Two Case Studies from Croatia”.

Summary
The author discusses the role of performances in city-making processes. The majority of texts on urban planning focus on the architectural solutions, as well as political, ideological, technological and economic factors that influence the material creation of a city. In such studies, performances and everyday practices are often treated as temporary interventions in the urbanscape, which are not of permanent value in defining and understanding the city. This paper challenges that approach and highlights the importance of performances in creating the city as a lived space. It examines ways in which performances bring to life or alter the affective capital of urban spaces. In doing so, it brings together the complementary perspectives of “social production” and “social construction” of urban space (Low 2006, 2017). In this paper, performances are also treated as practices of imagining and activating urban futures. The author draws her insights from two case studies in Croatia. The first example focuses on public spaces in Zagreb, the country’s capital, and the performances that celebrate or comment Croatia’s accession to the European Union. The second case study deals with the harbour city of Rijeka and the cultural events planned, but partially realized due to COVID-19 epidemic, in the frame of the 2020 European Capital of Culture programme. Based on those examples, the author analyses the designing of performative spaces as a way to (re)create a city as it should be, to affirm, negotiate or transgress city policies, orientations and developmental strategies.

https://aasconf.org/2021/programme

Project is funded by Croatian Science Foundation

Project is funded by Croatian Science Foundation

www.hrzz.hr
Project is funded by Slovenian Research Agency

Project is funded by Slovenian Research Agency

www.arrs.si
Faculty of Humanities University of Primorska

Faculty of Humanities University of Primorska

www.fhs.upr.si/sl
ZRC SAZU, Institute of Slovenian Ethnology

ZRC SAZU, Institute of Slovenian Ethnology

https://isn2.zrc-sazu.si/sl#v
Institute of Contemporary History

Institute of Contemporary History

www.inz.si
Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Zagreb, Department of Ethnology and Cultural Anthropology

Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Zagreb, Department of Ethnology and Cultural Anthropology

www.ffzg.unizg.hr/etno
Institute of Ethnology and Folklore Research

Institute of Ethnology and Folklore Research

www.ief.hr