The Invisible City

The project is dedicated to the topic of “city and migration” by using ethnic groups as “strategic research objects” and exploring their spatial strategies. The aim is to gain new insights in the area of basic research on migration and cities and innovative methods of urban research in the field of global processes and local effects. The improvisations of migrants create openings for new urban situations and creative lines of connection between the global and the local, thus opening up a new perspective on the local effects of global processes. The originality of the project lies in a strategy of removing the boundaries of “city”. It assumes that the resulting phenomena can be made visible in a concrete place and that authentic ethnic “fragments” – self-referential life worlds – are created, which cannot be explained simply by means of the integration-imperative or centrally authorized categories and the associated normative space. In this way, territory is created as a result of migratory practices, self-authorized structures that do not open up with the “integration imperative”.
The project consists of two parts. The first analysis deals with the Senegalese in Bolzano, i. e. with the phenomenon of migration in an urban context. The central hypothesis is that the Senegalese are building and occupying an “African village” there. In this way, Bolzano becomes part of a trans-urban context that extends all the way to Senegal. The second analysis deals with the existence of “vertical cities” in Italy. This is once again an autonomous structure, an “architecture” that has lost its original function and is used by migrants on their own authority. These are also autoreferential systems that can exist independently of the context of the stock. Each of these structures contains the potential to visualize the relationship between city and migration in a transurban context.
The project was sponsored by the TWF and the LFUI.

Imaging the City – Mediascapes & Diaspora / Peter Volgger

The article starts with the exploration of Venice from Baudrillard’s influential notion of the orders of ‚simulacra’ (1). Following his line of thought it develops the theoretical approach of the ‘archipelago’ in the context of globalization, both the movement of tourists and migrants. In Venice, the ‚Archipelago of the Other’ is manifested in the ‚city […]

From Other Places / Peter Volgger

The paper deals with the issue of migration and city on the basis of African migrants, in particular it defines the case of a religious brotherhood coming from Senegal in the city of Bolzano/Italy. The study focuses on describing tho- se arising dynamics of informal spaces and their significance for new modes of cohabitation and […]

‘Ethnoscapes & Hyperculture’ – Analisi del ‘Hotel House’ (italiano) / Peter Volgger, Katharina Paulweber & Adriano Cancellieri

Italy has been wracked by tension over the past few months as the outskirts of its biggest cities – Rome, Milan, Turin, Naples – have witnessed boisterious and burgeoning street protests against immigration. Rising unemployment, a continuing economic crisis, growing anti-immigrant sentiment, and a new po- litical alliance between the Northern League and Casa Pound […]