(Counter)Logics and Deep Histories of the Zone (the case of Paju Bookcity) (2014)

As part of the “Zonal Logics of Modernity” workshop, jointly organized by colleagues at The New School and NYU, I spoke about “counter-logics” through the example of Paju Bookcity in South Korea. Our two-day workshop focused on the special economic zone as a socio-cultural space, one we can perhaps better understand through the lenses of the humanities. Some of our key concerns were: whether there’s a particular connection between Asian modernity and the SEZ (given the spatial form’s early arrival and contemporary predominance in Asia); what role aesthetics and materiality play in the marketing and design of the zone; how the zone configures the urban subject and/or citizen; how “zonal logics” impact cultural production; and what epistemologies and ontologies of urbanity are embodied in the zone.

Here are the text and images from my talk.