"Re-Thinking Architecture: A Call for a New Social Space" by Chris Hazel

In 1992, architectural thinker and educator Lebbeus Woods proposed a series of technological pods throughout the war-torn sections of Zagreb meant to be used for free global communication. His motivation was for a an architectural free-space away from tyrannical government and traditional social hierarchy. My talk will expand on this idea of guiding social hierarchy by way of architecture. My research examines how the physical function of space influences the social hierarchy of people inhabiting the space. In the past 25 years, people have created and advanced global communication and connection through the internet where people are able to make themselves heard. This has certainly led to a push toward social equality, and architecture must be able to match the new social demands of people. I will contrast two recent projects of vastly differing social implication: the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, UAE (completed 2010) and the Pont Jean-Jacques Bosc in Bordeaux, France (set to be completed in 2016). These two examples will be contrasted by how they related to four items: the basic function of humans, the basic function of space, the creation of boundary and interaction, and the social hierarchy formed. 

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