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Messy UrbanismUnderstanding the "Other" Cities of Asia$
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Manish Chalana

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9789888208333

Published to Hong Kong Scholarship Online: January 2017

DOI: 10.5790/hongkong/9789888208333.001.0001

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A History of Messiness: Order and Resilience on the Sidewalks of Ho Chi Minh City

A History of Messiness: Order and Resilience on the Sidewalks of Ho Chi Minh City

Chapter:
(p.23) Chapter 2 A History of Messiness: Order and Resilience on the Sidewalks of Ho Chi Minh City
Source:
Messy Urbanism
Author(s):

Annette M. Kim

Publisher:
Hong Kong University Press
DOI:10.5790/hongkong/9789888208333.003.0002

This chapter focuses on both the resilience and evolution of the spatial practices of everyday people on the sidewalks through Ho Chi Minh City’s history. With an emphasis on spatial practices, the chapter selects two very different urban morphologies within present day Ho Chi Minh City, the French colonial center, which built a mini-Paris in Asia, and the merchant Chinatown of Cholon. While morphology has been viewed as both an expression of and shaper of culture and socio- economic structure, this chapter pursues a more nuanced tracing of how ordinary people have throughout history have altered, continued, subverted the use of interstitial public spaces in the city through various regimes: early settlement years, French colonial urbanism, communist revolutionary years, and the current market transition period. Recovering the history of practice allows a deeper reflection on the space and society nexus and how we define cultural urban identities such as the “Vietnamese city” or “Asian city.”

Keywords:   Sidewalk, Public Spaces, Resilience, Ho Chi Minh City

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