UCL's Centre for the Study of Social and Cultural Complexity

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Global Informality Project: Student posters

Thursday 26 May 2016, 3-5pm
UCL Institute of Advanced Studies, Room 17

Meet some of the MA students who are mapping informality. Part of the FRINGE Centre project, led by Prof. Ledeneva, to create an online encyclopaedia with entries of informal practices across the globe, each student has created an image that identifies a country/region specific practice that is non-transparent or hidden to an outsider. On this occasion, each of the students will be talking through their posters, and the hidden practices they represent. The practices represented include Mutt’s (informal marriage in Iran), Pripiski (informal reporting throughout the Soviet Union) and Pfusch (the shadow economy in Austria).

Registration not yet open. Register your interest to attend here 
This event is part of UCL's Festival of Culture

Negative Publicity: (East European) Artefacts of Extraordinary Rendition
Launch of FRINGE/IAS Seminar in Critical Area Studies

Thursday 26 May, 6-8pm
 UCL Institute of Advanced Studies, Common Ground

This talk features the photographer Edmund Clark and the investigative journalist Crofton Black, who will discuss their research into extraordinary rendition sites around the world. Their talk will focus on East European sites and how they connect to the global network of ‘rendition hubs’, including Afghanistan, Libya and Guantanamo. Clark and Black collected a vast number of images and documents which reveal the treatment to which detainees were subjected, and the intricate but haphazard network of state and private bodies that the process of extraordinary rendition is outsourced to. The event coincides with launch of a new book, Negative Publicity. Responses to Edmund Clark and Crofton Black’s presentation will be provided by:

  • Dr Felix Ciuta (UCL SSEES)
  • Prof Anita Prażmowska (LSE)
  • Dr Dominique Moran (Birmingham)

The event will be chaired by Dr Michał Murawski (UCL SSEES). 

Register to attend
This event is part of UCL's Festival of Culture

The Centre Cannot Hold'? The Non-Deaths and Afterlives of the High Modernist City

10 and 11 June 2015, 9-6pm
Calvert 22 Gallery, Shoreditch

The idea of the city dominated by a soaring landmark or a grand epicentre – whether a sacred temple, a secular monument or a Central Business District – was allegedly buried along with utopian high modernity, sometime during the second half of the 20th century. The new urban age taking shape in its place, say politicians, planners and scholars, will be humbler, more sustainable, collaborative and polycentric: eco-cities instead of monumental axes; pop-up innovation hubs rather than palaces of culture; fleeting anti-statues in place of equestrian heroes and sky-high monoliths; Gumtree and Airbnb amid the debris of the Galeries Lafayette and the Grand Hotel.

But is this centrifugal tendency really as absolute, inevitable – and desirable – as all that? And is the negation of hierarchy – on the terrain of the city itself, as well as of its descriptions and theorisations – in fact complicit in concealing new (or old) forms of domination? This conference will explore the aesthetics, politics, economics and affects of centrality and monumentality, from their 20th century golden age to their contemporary inheritances, afterlives, ruins and appropriations.

Registration not yet open. Register your interest to attend here 
This event is part of the Power and Architecture season at the Calvert 22 Gallery from June until August 2016

Squatting in East and West Europe

Monday 13 June 2016, 9-5pm
SSEES Building, Taviton Street

Europe squatting is often perceived as part of the ‘new social movements’ that have grown up since the Sixties. In this workshop, the West European pattern (if there is one) will be confronted with examples from the other side of the ‘Iron Curtain’. Why and how was informal or illegal housing possible in the Soviet bloc? So far, we know very little about this subject; indeed, it is often assumed that there was practically no squatting in communist dictatorships. This workshop will collect knowledge, and identify research gaps regarding Eastern Europe, to open up new perspectives by East-West-comparisons.

Register your interest to attend with Udo Grashoff (Space is limited)

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