CLANDESTINO FESTIVAL | GÖTEBORG | 4-6 JUNE 2015
SARA WESTIN: “THE NEUROTIC CITY”
Whether seen as an outcome of modern urban planning and architecture – with its emphasis on visual order and balanced form, or as a consequence of political-economical attempts to hide the ugly realities of capitalism beneath a fantasy of harmonious order, the contemporary Western city is continuously subject to human planning – that is; neurotic thought-and-action. Drawing on insights from her book The Paradoxes of Planning, as well as on geographer Japhy Wilson’s understanding of neoliberalism as obsessional neurosis, Sara Westin’s presentation revolves around the relation between urban space and the order-seeking mind-set of the ruling elite.
Sara Westin lives in Stockholm and is a researcher in human geography at the Institute for Housing and Urban Research (IBF), Uppsala University. Besides critiquing contemporary “city-like” building in Sweden, she has studied processes of renoviction in relation to the renewal of public housing units from the 1960s and 1970s. The Paradoxes of Planning. A Psycho-Analytical Perspective was published by Ashgate in 2014.