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Each society orders landscapes, buildings, and environments in  

distinctive ways to suit its specific needs, categories, and  

priorities. But what happens when that particular way of ordering and  

experiencing the world gets disrupted with the arrival of new groups  

of people, ideas and/or ideologies? This session focuses on how urban  

space mediates cultural encounters that result from migration,  

discoveries, conquests, colonialism, wars, transnational movements,  

and tourism. We invite contributions that explore how spatial forms  

and practices are transmitted, resisted, negotiated and transformed  

as different cultures come in contact and share the same space.

Inspired by recent studies in postcolonial studies and urban  

geography (W. Cronon, P. Carter, R. Kagan, S. Greenblatt among  

others), we are using the term encounter to acknowledge a  

multiplicity of urban experiences and the agency of multiple actors  

even in the face of unequal power relations. While this vein of  

inquiry has been used primarily for European contacts with natives in  

colonized lands, we believe it is a valid approach for understanding  

various modes of encounter, including those occurring within Europe.

We are especially interested in using this session as a venue for  

discussing innovative methodologies for studying the dynamics of  

cultural transformation in urban space. Hence, rather than purely  

conceptual explorations, we would like to invite contributions, which  

ground a strong theoretical framework in a critical analysis of the  

exchanges that occur at particular sites. Among the range of issues  

that submissions might address are:

-         the transformation of urban enclaves through the movement  

of people and ideas

-         the emergence of new types of spaces or changes in existing  

places as a result of encounters

-         the contested nature of shared urban space

-         the role of physical space in the construction of new urban  

identities and experiences

The session is open to entries from all historical periods and  

geographical locations. We also welcome papers that examine such  

dynamics from the scale of entire cities down to the level of  

individual buildings and the spaces between them. Please send  

abstracts (max 500 words) and a short CV to Zeynep Kezer & Sibel  

Zandi-Sayek. Deadline for Submission: October 1, 2005.

For more information on the Eighth International Conference on Urban  

History: http://www.historia.su.se/urbanhistory/eauh/invitation.htm

Zeynep Kezer

University of Nebraska-Lincoln

College of Architecture

Architecture Hall #232

Lincoln, NE 68508-0107

e-mail: zeynep@unl.edu

Sibel Zandi Sayek

College of William and Mary

Dept. Art and Art History

PO Box 8795

Williamsburg VA 23187-8795

e-mail: ssayek@wm.edu