The Power and Nature The Resistant Subversions

2016-09-01
Erişen, Serdar
This is a study of the dominant power of governmental implementa=ons in spa=al prac=ces and their disregard for nature and its representa=onal values in the public sphere. It begins by making a brief men=on of the struggle for Gezi Park in Taksim Square and the reasons behind its rapid development into a social phenomenon. The ini=al emergence of the ac=vist movements in Taksim Gezi Park seem to have been a reac=on to the government-based deconstruc=on and construc=on processes and ac=ons for Taksim, as a place in the heart of the city that is well-known for social events, demonstra=ons and social ac=vi=es. The square was closed by the government, preven=ng the holding of such social ac=vi=es as the May 1 celebra=ons in 2013, despite Taksim Square being a symbol of May 1 for the demonstrators; and s=ll under re-construc=on processes, changing the spa=al organiza=on of the square. The destruc=ve nature of the government-based construc=on processes became a s=mula=ng phenomenon for the public when aoempts were made to remove the trees from Taksim Gezi Park, which was considered at the =me an act of violence of the governmental processes against the natural environment through its means and apparatuses. The government’s ac=ons spurred into ac=on not only ac=vists, but also many of the inhabitants of İstanbul and people all across Turkey, who saw Taksim Gezi Park as a unique social space for İstanbul, as a green area at the heart of the city. The sudden increase in ac=vism and demonstra=ons, not only in the city, but also across the whole country, depicted oneway management of the construc=on processes in Taksim, and the rising tension within society resul=ng from a lack of reconcilia=on and media=on between different poli=cal groups, thoughts and ideologies – in other words, the decreasing democra=c processes in the country in decision making that disregard nature and the associated public sphere. In this respect, Taksim Gezi Park becomes a symbolic and resistant space, not only for the ac=vists protes=ng the construc=on processes, but also for the poli=cal struggles that emerged as a result of power tests and nondemocra=c decision-making processes related to issues that concern the en=re na=on. It became a representa=ve social space of the resistance of a social movement, ar=culated through events, demonstra=ons and the physical bodies of the ac=vists as a result of the struggles between the security forces and the demonstrators. These ac=ons and reac=ons turned Taksim Gezi Park into a place, a space, for the resistance of ac=vists against the decreasing democracy. The park gained representa=onal meaning beyond its physical and cogni=ve values, based on the experiences, ac=ons and reac=ons as part of the poli=cal and social struggles, which came to spread across the en=re country. It becomes obligatory, in this sense, to ques=on the role of the space itself in poli=cal and social organiza=ons to re-iden=fy whether the space itself could be part of the social and poli=cal resistance. This study, in this sense, aims to understand ini=ally the meaning of social space and its dynamics, as constructed by the public sphere under the control of the government, its apparatuses and its sovereigns. The social meaning of spa=al prac=ce is reinforced by a discussion of the dialec=cal rela=onship between nature and subjec=vity, crea=ng their own dominant forces within themselves under the concept of spaces of resistance. In this regard, nature is not only a source for understanding the social sphere and its dynamics under poli=cal and ideological forces, but also its representa=onal power, as iden=fied within these socio-poli=cal and cultural struggles.
International Journal of Architecture and Urban Studies

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Citation Formats
S. Erişen, “The Power and Nature The Resistant Subversions,” International Journal of Architecture and Urban Studies, pp. 33–40, 2016, Accessed: 00, 2021. [Online]. Available: http://www.dakam.org/ijaus.