- Residential hyperspace: building "convincing ambiences" for the middle classes
- Urban Geography
- Volume | Issue number
- 33 | 3
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Amsterdam Institute for Social Science Research (AISSR)
Over the past two decades, Dutch housing policy has become more market-oriented and neoliberal. This sea change is reflected in the architecture of owner-occupied houses, whose production has been increasingly accompanied by theming. Theming has often been criticized as an action to maximize profit through the commercialization of spaces and the resulting hyperreal, and hence fake, architecture. In the Netherlands, building professionals also develop theming in order to realize inward-looking, hyperreal residential spaces with an ambience that opposes the surrounding "real" space. Developers invent new strategies to engage with home buyers' unconscious thoughts on manageable community life and feelings of insecurity. References to the traditional small town, whether of Western or non-Western origin, are particularly powerful instruments to appeal to buyers' insecurities. Yet the profit imperative complicates the actual practice of theming. Creating different themed ambiences for disparate target groups strains the capacity of standardized housing production systems, necessitating additional investment. Architects and developers struggle to perfect a "convincing ambience" for prospective residents, while seeking to avoid producing the "fake architecture" that will stigmatize their work among professional colleagues.
- go to publisher's site
If you believe that digital publication of certain material infringes any of your rights or (privacy) interests, please let the Library know, stating your reasons. In case of a legitimate complaint, the Library will make the material inaccessible and/or remove it from the website. Please Ask the Library, or send a letter to: Library of the University of Amsterdam, Secretariat, Singel 425, 1012 WP Amsterdam, The Netherlands. You will be contacted as soon as possible.