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Friday, October 06, 2006

Pandemic Architecture pt 2

On Sun, 7 May 2006 18:37:56 -0700 , peter williams <*******@yahoo.com> wrote:

Hi Lionel:

Sorry for the delay in responding to your mail. I am delighted that you are taking interest in such a serious and rather relevant study. Are you based here in Singapore? It wasn't clear from your mail. You raised a number of points, many I wished that was shared on the blog. With that said, I will do my best to address some of the issues that you have raised.

First: regarding your comments on "isolation." It is important to first reconstruct our understanding of pandemics as a logical off shoot to globalization. Pandemics are therefore interwoven into the complexities of modern living in much the same way that economies, languages, political ideologies and pop culture do.

The concept of isolation as we know it is very useful in this case. Rather than separation and exclusion...perhaps what is preferred is a "glocalized" approach...One which understands the instruments necessary to participate at the local level while fully understand its ability in having a global outcome. Isolation therefore suggests for us an opportunity to distinguish and identify categories/behaviors in order to engender a holistic outcome. (emergence theory)

Also..be careful not to get trapped in a mechanistic reading of "terms" and their definition. "Community" for example has certain principles/bylaws which operate overtly but more often covertly in order to clearly define it as such. Within communities therefore it is quite easy to isolate the strands by which such a collective exists...the successful application of this will allow architects and planners to make preventive strategies rather than reactive ones as you suggested. If you are successful at uncovering the internal logic of any system you can target and better predict ways in which the system will behave. (pandemic-ready). Also...it needs to be restated that pandemics themselves exist as an institution...and therefore I would argue as a community also..in and of itself. Architecture and planning also are important communities. Seeing how these communities participate with and within each other is helpful in your undertaking

Keep this in mind as you proceed.

I hope my thoughts could help. Please keep me posted. Is this a year/semester long undertaking?

Let me know.

Peter

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