Topic “Ideal Spaces”

    An ideal space is a space both imagined and perfected. Traditionally, an ideal space was associated with the notion of utopia, or in more broader terms, with the search for a space hoped for where humans can unfold their positive potentials and were able to lead a better life. Today, in times of globalization (also of problems), the search for an ideal space seems to be obsolete and to belong to a past. But this isn’t the case, not only as utopias are concerned. In terms of non-physical spaces, we live in many ‘ideal’ spaces, at least on a part-time base, and also the issue of the classical utopia as a space for a better community of humans has not been settled. We want to invite to investigate possible meanings of spaces considered “ideal” in both past and present, to investigate their range of appearance as well as their social relevance and impact, in particular today.

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Featured Articles

featuredimage Historische Technikakzeptanz – als kontextualisierende Technikzukunftsforschung am Fallbeispiel der T1-Duplexklasse der Pennsylvania Railroad, 1942–1951

The essay presents the brief history of the last technological development of the steam age on US railroad tracks: the T1 duplex class of the Pennsylvania Railroad, 1942–1951. Referring to the methods of today’s technological assessment, the article is questioning a teleological interpretation of the last US passenger tratin steam locomotive as a failing innovation.

featuredimage Konsum(t)räume. Die Warenwelt als Technotop

The phenomenon of consumption is based on the industrial production of both material and symbolic a-bundance. Until the 20th century, consumption was socially and regionally limited. Consumption in this traditional setting clearly had a status expressing function. The industrialization of the production of goods caused an expansion of material artefacts which could not have been imagined before and revolutionized the public and the private sphere. The civic concept of the city was replaced by a concept defining the public sphere as a warehouse, highly dependent on technical support. The conceptualization of the city as a sphere of consumption can be described as a distribution of electric lights. Electricity, advertising and brands sha-ped the technotopical ,format’ of the modern consumer mindset as spatial concept.

Editorial notes

Nach nunmehr eineinhalb Jahren erscheint es uns als inhaltlich Verantwortlichen für das E-Journal sinnvoll, eine Bilanz der bislang veröffentlichten Beiträge zu ziehen. Die Vielfalt und Qualität der uns erreichenden und nach Peer Review veröffentlichten Beiträge bestärkt uns in der Ansicht, grundsätzlich den richtigen Weg zu verfolgen. Bei der Gründung des E-Journals im Sommer 2009 war nicht absehbar, ob und wie die diskutierende virtuelle Community auf einen so offenstehenden Begriff wie ‘Spaces’ in Verbindung mit dem Hinweis auf sozialkonstruktivistische erkenntnisleitende Interessen reagieren würde. Uns hat die Breite der eingehenden Beiträge überrascht. Sie reichen von konkreten historischen Analysen über Fallstudien zu ‘Räumen’ bis zu theoretischen Überlegungen und umfassen vom Tagungsbericht über den Nachruf, vom Essay bis zum wissenschaftlichen Aufsatz ganz unterschiedliche Textformate …

Technik, Hausmacht und die Macht im Haus

Naturally, housepower and indoors power are absolutely heterogenious realms. But they have one object in common: they are not directly but indirectly dependent on technology.

Hochschulzulassung, Neoliberalismus und das Zufällige

It will be demonstrated on the basis of deregulation of university admission in Germany that neoliberal inspired reforms can show characteristics of an ideology – if “ideology” is understood as the willingness to ignore historical experience, scientific results, expert opinions and common sense based on political and economic fundamental convictions. This even holds true for the universities’ conduct. It will also be questioned if random student admission could be a deliberate part of social engineering of admission procedures even only as a symbolic act of acknowledging limits in the rational administration of educational biographies and in the vindicatory policies of selection procedures.

From Smart City to Urban Digi-Doomsaying

Creating a counterpoint to commonplace imaginaries of the smart city as a utopian space where all prob-lems are solved through digital optimization of the socio-cultural status-quo, Dani Ploeger’s public artwork Post-Apocalypse Smart City Lagoon uses an icon of smart city ideology – the QR code – to invoke visions beyond the impending catastrophe of techno-consumer culture. Drawing from Jean-Pierre Dupuy’s concept of enlightened doomsaying, QR codes on public trash cans across Venice lead to immersive digital videos that show the Venetian Lagoon after the water has risen and only floating trash cans remain.

„Ökonomisierung“ der Hochschulen. Ein Rückblick.

Looking back to the years from 1995 to 2010, different aspects of the so called economisation of higher education are recalled: competition, economic education management and deregulation of admission to higher edu­-cation. Of special interest are some limitations in the economic approach as such: the tendency toward quantification and dichotomisation, toward instrumental rationality and toward a methodical oblivion of nature. As for the economisation of science, it is diagnosed a fundamental and accelerated pressure concerning technological innovations, according to theories of economic growth with endogenous technological change, and resulting from the dematerialisation of numerous products including scientific knowledge itself. The elites of science seem to be a new ruling class to which today´s ecological challenges are something like a legitimational windfall in the business of knowledge economy which, apart from this, has become totally self-referential.

The Field Concept in Psychology, Gestalt Theory, Physics, and Epic Theatre – Brecht’s Adaptations of Kurt Lewin

In the first half of the 20th century, the field concept was part of theoretical and methodological innovations in physics, gestalt theory as well as epic theatre as introduced by Bertolt Brecht. Another reference is the psychology of Kurt Lewin. In what ways Brecht took notice of Lewin’s research, especially his demand of a transition from Aristotelian to Galileian thought is reconstructed within the context of paradigm shifts fostered by logical empiricism, gestalt theory and physics. Lewin’s argumentation of an advanced understanding of the lawfulness of societal and psychological processes is placed in the center and traced back as an inspiration to Brecht’s writings. Vice versa, the article investigates in what ways Brecht’s theoretical writings and adaptations of Lewin’s approach can be reconsidered as a source for psychological theorizing.

KIT Scientific Publishing, Karlsruhe | Journal of New Frontiers in Spatial Concepts | ISSN 1868-6648