Globalisation is mainly identified and perceived as an economic force, however it is also a cultural and visual phenomenon.
Indeed, the ‘global’ pervades and alters the urban social fabric through media representations and it has the symbolic power to transform urban spaces. Although the scholarships on globalization as an ‘objective’ phenomenon are greatly expanded, so far not much attention has been paid to the feature of its ‘subjective’ dimension, the increasingly global consciousness. In particular, there is a dearth of research related to the textual-visual dynamics of globalization—the images and metaphors that constitute the common sense of the ‘global’. Through a phenomenological—interpretative approach, this presentation looks at those visual formations that are affecting the two major cities of Australia: Sydney and Melbourne. Exemplified by a body of digital still images, this paper analyses and interprets two selected visual evidences through the lens of political theory. By means of the analytical condensation symbols, this presentation aims to grasp how the global imaginary gets articulated and depicted by the neoliberal ‘market globalism’ ideology. Yet these images are a selective and ‘subjective’ media-representation of concepts associated with structures, places and identity; in this sense they are not unproblematic. However, they represent the concrete tracks or ideological markers of globality. Thus, they are crucial keys to access the global imaginary to better understand how it is socially produced. In visualizing, analyzing and interpreting aesthetics of global change in Sydney and Melbourne, this paper argues that, in spite of the thickening of the production, circulation and consumption of symbolic forms that condense spatial-symbolic scales of ‘local-national’ and ‘global’, the two social fabrics under investigation display a fragmented ideological landscape.
Speaker: Tommaso Durante
Wednesday 17 July: 12.30 pm to 2.00 pm
Emily McPherson Building, Building 13, Level 3, Lecture theatre Room 9