RESEARCH ARCHITECTURE: A Laboratory for Critical Spatial Practices


Paradoxically perhaps, the Centre for Research Architecture sets out to question the two separate terms that make up its given title. It seeks to open up the discipline and praxis of 'architecture' – understood as the production of rarefied buildings and urban structures – into shifting network of 'spatial practices' that includes various other forms of intervention. It contests as well the utilitarian, applied, means-to-ends relation between knowledge and action that is evoked by the term 'research' and the artificial opposition between theory and practice it implies.

Laura Kurgan - Close Up at a Distance

The past two decades have seen revolutionary shifts in our ability to navigate, inhabit, and define the spatial realm. The data flows that condition much of our lives now regularly include Global Positioning System (GPS) readings and satellite images of a quality once reserved for a few militaries and intelligence agencies, and powerful geographic information system (GIS) software is now commonplace. These new technologies have raised fundamental questions about the intersection between physical space and its representation, virtual space and its realization.

Michel Feher: The Goverened in Politics

Neither apolitical nor governmental, to be involved in politics without aspiring to govern… such are the constraint that delineate the condition common to all practitioners of nongovernmental politics [...] Nongovernmental politics can be envisioned as encompassing the political involvements of the governed, or better still, as the politics in which the governed as such are involved [...] what all these activists all have in common is that they are driven by a shared determination not to be governed thusly.

Mike Davis - Who will build the ark?

"In the first section, ‘Pessimism of the Intellect’, I adduce arguments for believing that we have already lost the first, epochal stage of the battle against global warming. The Kyoto Protocol, in the smug but sadly accurate words of one of its chief opponents, has done ‘nothing measurable’ about climate change. Global carbon dioxide emissions rose by the same amount they were supposed to fall because of it. [2] It is highly unlikely that greenhouse gas accumulation can be stabilized this side of the famous ‘red line’ of 450 ppm by 2020.

Dipesh Chakrabarty - The Climate of History: Four Theses

While freedom has been the most important motif of accounts of human history since the Enlightenment, there has never been an awareness of the geological agency human beings were gaining through processes linked to their acquisition of freedom. Whatever the rights we wish to celebrate as our freedom, we cannot afford to destabilize conditions that work like boundary parameters of human existence.


Matthew Fuller, Andrew Goffey - Towards an Evil Media Studies

Evil media studies is not a discipline, nor is it the description of a category of particularly unpleasant media objects. It is a manner of working with a set of informal practices and bodies of knowledge, characterised as stratagems, which pervade contemporary networked media and which straddle the distinction between the work of theory and of practice. Evil media studies deliberately courts the accusation of anachronism so as to both counter and to enhance the often tacit deception and trickery within the precincts of both theory and practice.

Ghosts on the waterfront - An interview with Marcus Rediker

In an excerpt from his acclaimed book The Slave Ship: A Human History, historian Marcus Rediker describes the deep−sea sailing ship as linchpin of the emergent transatlantic economic order and instrument of terror for slaves brought from Africa to the Americas. In a subsequent interview, he discusses the role played by European harbour cities in the slave trade and their responsibilities in reckoning with its moral legacy.


Alberto Toscano - Geography Against Capitalism

In jointly approaching Marxism and anarchism to draw from them intellectual and strategic resources for contemporary anti-capitalism can we avoid the tiresome alternative between the production of sterile doctrinal hybrids, on the one hand, and the neurotic revisiting of the primal scene of separation, on the other? The wager of this talk is that turning to anarchist and Marxist lineages in geographical thought might help us to avoid the dull commonplaces of polemic – whether this will define new frontlines or forge unexpected alliances, I leave open.

United Nations Treaties and Principles on Space Law / The Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space

The international legal principles in these five treaties provide for non-appropriation of outer space by any one country, arms control, the freedom of exploration, liability for damage caused by space objects, the safety and rescue of spacecraft and astronauts, the prevention of harmful interference with space activities and the environment, the notification and registration of space activities, scientific investigation and the exploitation of natural resources in outer space and the settlement of disputes.


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