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Spectacular Cities

Spectacular cities: Laurie Taylor explores the origins and meaning of ostentatious architecture, from Kazakhstan to the United Arab Emirates.

Spectacular urbanisation: The world’s tallest building is in Dubai and the 2022 World Cup in soccer will be played in fabulous Qatar facilities. But what role do the sensational cities of the Arabian Peninsula play in urban development across the Earth? Laurie Taylor talks to Harvey Molotch, Professor of Sociology at New York University and to Davide Ponzini , Associate Professor of Urban Planning at Politecnico di Milano, Italy. Also, Natalie Koch, Associate Professor of Geography at Syracuse University, asks why autocrats in resource rich nations build spectacular new capital cities.

Producer: Jayne Egerton

Available now

29 minutes

Last on

Mon 4 May 2020 00:15



Natalie Koch, The Geopolitics of Spectacle, Space, Synecdoche and the New Capitals of Asia, (Cornell University Press, 2018)

The New Arab Urban - Gulf Cities of Wealth, Ambition, and Distress, edited by Harvey Molotch and Davide Ponzini, (New York University Press, 2019)


  • Wed 13 Mar 2019 16:00
  • Mon 18 Mar 2019 00:15
  • Mon 4 May 2020 00:15

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