#8 Place. Anthropology of space

Social Diversity in the Neoliberal City: The Role of Architecture

Why the talk is inspiring?

After the collapse of the Soviet Bloc and state socialism the majority of the countries become post-socialist; and post-WWII cities, planned and expanded from state funds, are turning into neoliberal cities. Classical approaches within the field of urban studies and urban development saw social diversity as the sense of the city; nowadays it is decreasing and being replaced by growing segregation. Yet, social diversity has become the hype in urban planning. One might ask then, what would be the role of architect in this process? The lecture will deal with architecture as social practice, interaction and process. The lecturer will invite the audience to discuss, what social, architectural and urban-planning direction of urban development is to be chosen in post-socialist city of Vilnius.



Dalia Čiupailaitė

How the speaker is exceptional?

Dalia Čiupailaitė is doctoral candidate in Sociology Department at Vilnius University, where she writes her PhD thesis on social diversity in urban environment. In her work she deals with questions about urban segmentation, homogeneity and diversity, namely: how social differences manifest themselves in the city, how they are ruled, implemented or eliminated, what spatial expression they acquire, what roles urban planners and architects play in these processes. The particular attention is drawn to recent changes in Vilnius City.


The Uses of Disorder. Personal Identity and City Life.

Richard Sennett

Why the book is worth reading?

This classical study by Richard Sennett has not lost its relevance in the context of nowadays neoliberal cities and is equally relevant in discussions about changes in post-socialist Lithuanian cities. Living in diverse neighbourhood is increasingly changed by safe and clean spaces of the neoliberal city that distance us from the „other“ or the „different“. Sennett analyses, how the ideal order of contemporary city generates closed and alienating models of behaviour, which become a premise for violent conflicts in the city. As alternative to it he proposes the creatively disordered city, which foster abilities to cope with life challenges.