The research project concerned the process of urban metamorphosis taking place in Southwest China, with particular attention to the spreading of gated communities in Chongqing City as a political strategy of “sustainable development” based on the principles of eco-capitalism. New urban planning agenda is designed to exploit the natural landscape, rewriting the significance of the watershed for the local community and the elite. The overarching argument is that thanks to a detailed knowledge of local geomorphological characteristics and cultural specificities, Chongqing government could turn the watershed into a fetishized representation of current technocratic ideology. The imaginary space reproduced by advertising and propaganda systems, favors the transition towards a new understating of the natural resources as pure economic assets, establishing also that zoning and gentrification are the right planning path to follow. This study introduces a focus on the relational structure of water and land management hitherto lacking in the area of Chinese Studies, as well as on the mass media influence in the process of creation of new urban spaces. It also informs our empirical understanding of Chinese state-building practice in the terms of recursive patterns seeking to prove historical continuity through a selective knowledge of tradition and culture, whose outcomes are institutionalized at the urban level to legitimize local politics and make sense of spatial changes.

Spatialization of Happiness in Chongqing Watershed. A critical analysis of the mechanisms of urban space production in relation to the current local management of the waterscape

Bonato Michela
2020

Abstract

The research project concerned the process of urban metamorphosis taking place in Southwest China, with particular attention to the spreading of gated communities in Chongqing City as a political strategy of “sustainable development” based on the principles of eco-capitalism. New urban planning agenda is designed to exploit the natural landscape, rewriting the significance of the watershed for the local community and the elite. The overarching argument is that thanks to a detailed knowledge of local geomorphological characteristics and cultural specificities, Chongqing government could turn the watershed into a fetishized representation of current technocratic ideology. The imaginary space reproduced by advertising and propaganda systems, favors the transition towards a new understating of the natural resources as pure economic assets, establishing also that zoning and gentrification are the right planning path to follow. This study introduces a focus on the relational structure of water and land management hitherto lacking in the area of Chinese Studies, as well as on the mass media influence in the process of creation of new urban spaces. It also informs our empirical understanding of Chinese state-building practice in the terms of recursive patterns seeking to prove historical continuity through a selective knowledge of tradition and culture, whose outcomes are institutionalized at the urban level to legitimize local politics and make sense of spatial changes.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/10278/3758198
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