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FLEXIBILITY Semiotics Culture Metanarrative



Identity Sign


Myth Community Historiography







Nomos Doxa


The real becomes a social construction.


The tendency of contemporary social value systems to create modern myths....

A science of signs. form/content image/meaning Stalinist Ideals: Interpreting totalitarian art and literature in the context of cultural history, soviet totalitarian aims were akin to the modernists' goal of producing world-transformative art.

Myth is the use of language to depoliticize speech; myth transforms history into nature.(K.Dovey) ‘signifier/signified’ Motivations for such manipulations vary, from a desire to sell products to a simple desire to maintain the status quo. (Barthes)

Debunked Lacan argues that the concepts of "Law" and "Structure" are unthinkable without language. the Symbolic is within a linguistic dimension Symbolic capital turned into political capital (Bourdieu) Barthes Joiuissance is seen as a form of resistance to the socially constructed self and an evasion of ideology.

Fields of Cultural Production For Adorno the culture industry brings aesthetic production into complicity with forces of domination. The ‘aura’ of aesthetic production becomes manufactured and geared to a standardized market (Adorno and Horkemeier 1993). Lyotard (1984) talks about a loss in the credibility of universal theory (metanarratives), this coupled with the increased attention to difference (local narratives). While this shift has embodied liberating aspects, in Jameson’s terms it also brings a new wardrobe of cultural clothes for capitalism and a new depthlessness of cultural life (Jameson 1983, via Hal Foster). It involves triumph of surface over depth and detached form over social context, at the same time it has increased the economic value of aesthetics, the ‘symbolic capital’ of architecture. “As temporal continuities continues to break down, the experience of the present becomes powerfully, overwhelmingly vivid and “material”: the world comes before the schizophrenic with heightened intensity, bearing a mysterious and oppressive charge of effect, glowing with hallucinatory energy” (Jameson 1983)

Production of Meaning The culture industry forges an alliance of art and advertising and political propaganda. It involves the colonization of the psyche as the unconscious is manipulated for purposes of seduction and dreams are appropriated for profit (Arato 1987). Thus there is a stimulation of a desire producing a market that is never satisfied: ‘The culture industry perpetually cheats its consumers of what it perpetually promises ... the diner must be satisfied with the menu’ (Adorno and Horkheimer 1993:35) The aesthetic task is not the production of harmony but of dissonance, utopian visions that meet audiences desires are seen as complicit with the dominant order( Heynen 1999:186-188).

the gaze

image screen

subject of representation

Jacque Lacan Diagram of the Gaze From The Four Fundamental Concets of Psychoanalysis

State Apparatus

Alternative Ephemerality

Framing Everydayness To transcend ideology would be to render the world meaningless.

Smooth or Striated

Smooth or Striated

State Apparatus


Personal space and territory

transformation Flexibility



Ephemerality -establishing temporary communities is a tool for creating a surrogate notion of a city beyond the capitalist logic of use-value and profitability. -engender alternative practices within the city, fostered through cooperation and self-empowerment. -collective ideals and ways to overcome today’s harsh conditions of economic competition -proposes a model for social interaction, thus being not so much a container as a transformer, creating new ways in which the public space could be used Hannah Arendt: “Nomos limits actions and prevents them from dissipating into an unforseeable. constantly expanding system of relationships and by doing so gives actions their enduring forms�

Arendt, Hannah. The Human Condition. [Chicago]: University of Chicago, 1958. Print. Deleuze, Gilles, and FĂŠlix Guattari. A Thousand Plateaus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota, 1987. Print. Dovey, Kim. Framing Places: Mediating Power in Built Form. London: Routledge, 1999. Print. Foster, Hal. The Anti-aesthetic: Essays on Postmodern Culture. Port Townsend, WA: Bay, 1983. Print. Hays, K. Michael. Architecture's Desire: Reading the Late Avant-garde. Cambridge, MA: MIT, 2010. Print. Lacan, Jacques. The Four Fundamental Concepts of Psycho-analysis. New York: Norton, 1978. Print.


BAS Emerging Arctic Landscapes