COURSE: Public Space, Culture & Identity

Course: Public Space, Culture & Identity

art, architecture & activism as public power

This course is designed to study the notion of public space and its importance in crystallizing collective cultural identity and citizenship and will work through the creation of a podcast and an activista’ project. Very firstly, the goal is to engage critically with the terms at hand: public space, culture & identity. Then, exploring possibilities of practices (art, activism and architecture) within urban and non-urban settings that challenge themselves the same idea of public space. Within a Palestinian context where occupation, military urbanism, privatization and savage capitalism and leaves little room for the production of new public spaces and discourses, the course questions how art, architecture and critical theory impact and influence the possibility to create new spaces for multitudes and to reengage with the idea of a public sphere. While searching for the identity of the place, typologies of public spaces will be illustrated and their social and cultural identity will be discussed. The creation of an activista’ project and its documentation and publication through a podcast will be the focus of this class.


Rebecca Solnit, Hope in the Dark, Third Edition (New York: Haymarket Books, 2015) pp 1ff “Foreword to the Third Edition” 

Haraway, Donna (1991). “A Cyborg Manifesto: Science, Technology, and Socialist-Feminism in the Late Twentieth Century,” in Simians, Cyborgs and Women: The Reinvention of Nature. Routledge.

Eyal Weizman, Roundabout Revolutions

Don Mitchell, The End of Public Space? People’s Park, Definitions of the Public, and Democracy, Annals of the Association of American Geographers, Vol. 85, No. 1. (Mar., 1995), pp. 108-133 [student access]

film: Mark Kitchell, Berkeley in the Sixties (1990)

Massimo De Angelis, Omnia Sunt Communia: In Common (2017), Introduction

Massimo De Angelis, The Zapatista’s Voice (1998)

The Funambulist, Issue 13: Queers, Feminists, Interiors

Yezid Sayigh, Armed Struggle and the Search for State: The Palestinian National Movement 1949-1993, (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1997), pp. 195—216.

Alice Speri, How the Oslo Accords betrayed the Palestinian Women behind the First Intifada (2018)

Alessandro Petti, Decolonizing Knowledge

Farocki, Harun. Videograms Of A Revolution DVD. Harun Farocki Filmproduktion, Berlin; Bremer Institut Film, Fernsehen Produktionsgesellschaft mbH, Bremen, 1992.

Khalid, Lara. “Medium And Revolution”. In War; An Event Free Of People. (Ramallah: 2018).

Secondary Books:

Rebecca Solnit Hope in the Dark
Paulo Freire Pedagogy of the Oppressed
Bell Hooks Teaching Community
Massimo De Angelis, Omnia Sunt Communia
Emily Apter, Unexceptional Politics
Kevin Ward, Anarchism in Action