An inquiry on rebel cities: How spatial morphology sets the stage for urban movements

Vurucular Kesimci E., CİRAVOĞLU A.

Journal of Design for Resilience in Architecture and Planning, vol.4, no.1, pp.53-64, 2023 (Peer-Reviewed Journal) identifier


The common thread to urban movements happening worldwide in recent years is the fact that urban public space is used as a significant setting by city dwellers for expressing their “objections”. What has been experienced throughout urban movements when public spaces have been occupied enables us to grasp the meaning of occupied spaces in the city thus allowing us to get to know societies and cities. Therefore, this research has investigated the impact of urban public space on the consciousness, interaction and gathering of city dwellers as well as urban movements. Within the scope of the research, eight “rebel cities” have been analyzed, and have interviews with participants of urban movements from these cities. These are Tunis, Cairo, Barcelona, London, New York, Dublin, Paris, and Hamburg, respectively. The places where urban movements were visible in urban space and their surroundings have been analyzed using the Space Syntax method, and the gathering/unification/integration potential of public space has been spatially investigated by determining the characteristics of urban patterns. Accordingly, the city affects the formation of urban movements with its spatial pattern. In the case of Merida city, which constitutes the control sample and which was not affected by the urban movements that spread to the whole world, this finding is also supported. With the results obtained in the research, the significance of public space, as an essential element contributing to the formation of urban movements, has been proven. This study further reveals the possibility of urban spaces allowing social encounters and its importance in terms of democracy.