Children’s imaginaries in the city: on things and materials

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Soreanu, Raluca ; Hurducas, I. (2016)

The article is an exploration of urban imaginaries emerging through a play with materials. Starting from a complex activist exercise for reimagining the space of a park in decay, whose protagonists are children, we propose a reflection on the productivity and resilience of matter. We argue that a new materialist sociology is one that takes disappearances seriously. Capitalism renders space abstract not only through flow and circulation, but also through stillness. We follow the curious disappearances and reappearances of the park in question, tracing the mutations of urban planning, of the juridical domain, and of the everyday use of space. Finally, we analyse the making of a maquette of the park by a group of children and their alliances with activists. The maquette is a political “thing”: it leads us away from an urban imaginary populated by discrete objects to an urban imaginary of depth and it reconcretises space.
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