Book announcement: Urban Spaces in Japan: Cultural and Social Perspectives

Edited by Christoph Brumann, Evelyn Schulz

Urban Spaces in Japan explores the workings of power, money and the public interest in the planning and design of Japanese space. Through a set of vivid case studies of well-known Japanese cities including Tokyo, Kobe, and Kyoto, this book examines the potential of civil society in contemporary planning debates. Further, it addresses the implications of Japan’s biggest social problem – the demographic decline – for Japanese cities, and demonstrates the serious challenges and exciting possibilities that result from the impending end of Japan’s urban growth.

Presenting a synthetic approach that reflects both the physical aspects and the social significance of urban spaces, this book scrutinizes the precise patterns of urban expansion and shrinkage. In doing so, it also summarizes current theories of public space, urban space, and the body in space which are relevant to both Japan and the wider international debate.

With detailed case studies and more general reflections from a broad range of disciplines, this collection of essays demonstrates the value of cross-disciplinary cooperation. As such, it is of interest to students and scholars of geography and urban planning as well as history, anthropology and cultural studies.

1 Introduction (Christoph Brumann, Christian Dimmer and Evelyn Schulz)
2 Urbanisation, city, and city system in Japan between development and shrinking: coping with shrinking cities in times of demographic change (Winfried Flchter)
3 The colonial appropriation of public space: architecture and city planning in Japanese-dominated Manchuria (Anke Scherer)
4 Re-uniting a divided city: high-rises, conflict, and urban space in central Kyoto (Christoph Brumann)
5 Re-imagining public space: the vicissitudes of Japan’s privately owned public spaces (Christian Dimmer)
6 Citizen participation and urban development in Japan and Germany: issues and problems (Carolin Funck, Tsutomu Kawada and Yoshimichi Yui)
7 Indifferent communities: neighbourhood associations, class and community consciousness in pre-war Tokyo (Katja Schmidtpott)
8 Who cares about the past in today’s Tokyo? (Paul Waley)
9 Gendered modes of appropriating public space (Ingrid Getreuer-Kargl)
10 Walking the city: spatial and temporal configurations of the urban spectator in writings on Tokyo (Evelyn Schulz)
11 Shrinking cities and liveability in Japan: emerging relationships and challenges (Andr Sorensen)

About Paula

Paula lives in the vortex of academic life. She studies medieval Japanese history.
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