24 May 2019

Andy Merrifield delivers USP annual lecture

The Department of Urban Studies and Planning invited scholar and author Andy Merrifield to deliver their annual lecture, with a title of 'Endgame Urbanism'.

Andy Merrifield delivers USP annual lecture

Introduced by Professor Malcolm Tait, Andy Merrifield spoke about the urban expansion we have seen in the modern world and the effects this has had on humanity. He said of his talk:

"These days, we’re living in a world that has undergone colossal urban expansion. At the same time, the parameters for human expansion have diminished, dwindled for many denizens. Our urban system is super-dynamic yet wreaks dullness for the bulk of people. Cities are exploitable commodities, their land a pure financial asset, evermore frackable spatial units.

As buildings go up, partition walls move in for millions of people. Speculative space opens up, dwelling space closes down, gets sliced up and subdivided. Expansive planetary urbanisation begets an urbanism of micro confinement. Richness for the few resonates as crampedness for the many. This talk will investigate what I will call Endgame Urbanism."

Andy Merrifield is an independent scholar, author of eleven books, including The New Urban Question, Magical Marxism, Metromarxism, intellectual biographies of Henri Lefebvre, Guy Debord and John Berger, a popular travelogue, The Wisdom of Donkeys, a manifesto for liberated living, The Amateur, and, more recently, a memoir about falling in and out of love with cities, inspired by the writings of Raymond Carver, What We Talk About When We Talk About Cities (and Love).

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