Call for Papers: Africa Critical in Architectural Theory Review

 Architectural Theory Review Special Issue Call for Papers: Africa Critical (Vol. 20, No. 3)

Unlike every other populated continent, Africa retains a monolithic description that flattens and abrogates the complexities inherent across its 54 countries. The connotations of the name bear witness to a phantasmatic mobility for which crises have opened various regions to reinvention via mediated spectacle, while also occluding the hegemonies of imperialism and its afterlives. Such transfers, intensified during the violent insurgencies of colonial possession and subsequent ethnic conflicts, has continued into the twenty-first century at an alarmingly rapid pace affecting how and why power is reified among urban centres. Competing ventures, including the fabrication of new infrastructures, unlimited mineral processing and the (de)mobilisation of humanitarian aid all can be read as dynamic indexes of those “networks of concrete becoming” (AbdouMaliq Simone) which quickly eschewed lingering colonial systems in favour of the global. We seek to interrogate how the mapping of environmental impacts and encoding of borders dismantle the “invisible” systems (Filip de Boeck) that once connoted security and development in the post-colony.

This issue invites essays that investigate how displacements such as the phenomena of sovereignty, citizenship, the deployment of health systems, the radicalisation of race and gender, and the manifestations of diaspora are registered in the built environment. More broadly, the issue seeks contributions that reflect on how architecture, art, and landscape confront such divisive forms on the African continent while ensnaring agendas of the everyday.

Africa Critical will attempt to recentre Africa as a source for and mirror of a spatial politics that is rendering a new map of global capital. How can humanistic inquiries begin to move away from the monumental to suggest a holistic yet critical mode to address these incursions? This issue commences with the unmitigated resourcing of Africa throughout history as a platform for staging an alternative reading of global modernity.

Architectural Theory Review, founded at the University of Sydney in 1996 and now in its twentieth year, is the pre-eminent journal of architectural theory in the Australasian region. Published by Taylor & Francis in print and online, the journal is an international forum for generating, exchanging, and reflecting on theory in and of architecture. All texts are subject to a rigorous process of blind peer review.

Enquiries about this special issue theme, and possible papers, are welcome, please email the editor, Sean Anderson:
urther details are also posted on 

***The deadline is 26th August 2015 – but please do contact Sean Anderson if you need a short extension….***

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