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Authors: LOO BO YAN
Keywords: Architecture
Design Track
Erik Gerard L'Heureux
Unnatural natural
Issue Date: 6-Feb-2010
Citation: LOO BO YAN (2010-02-06T04:25:33Z). SINGAPORE �S ECONOMIES OF NATURE : GLORY TO THE GARDEN. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: This paper outlines an investigation into the links between the production and consumption of space with the production of ideology and hegemony by reading into the concept of the Unnatural Natural in Singapore. The Unnatural Natural is termed here to be a view of the garden of Singapore as either natural or manicured, a view taken to be entirely unnatural and constructed. In the words of Louis Althusser, these terms represent an ideology which is taken to be ‘the imaginary relationships of individuals to their real conditions of existence’. With the environmental movement in mind, the study will investigate how the ideology of the Unnatural Natural in Singapore is an example of political hegemony and influences in the reading and consuming of land from reverence to become a resource. While the ‘Save-our-planet’ discussion is understood as not of interest to everyone, the discussion of this issue is also recognized as ultimately influential upon our built environment (read: site) that would comprise inevitably, of architecture. Singapore, while claimed by Koolhaas to be a tabula rasa city state that can perpetually erase anything it has built, - ‘since the island is considered changeable in its entirety, no version is ever definitive’, cannot ultimately replace a forest and transplant it to a corner of the island quickly and efficiently like it has done for its agriculture, industry and residential zones. As this permanence has been attached and is unique to the natural, are we looking at just skirting this portion of the environment as ultimately untouchable (by architecture) due to the ideologies willed to it? Or do we realize that its transformation is inevitably a part of a whole, such that the environment is finally understood as not of so many separate and distinct components, much like the way our land has been parceled and zoned?
Appears in Collections:Master's Theses (Restricted)

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