Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Messy UrbanismUnderstanding the "Other" Cities of Asia$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

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

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM HONG KONG SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.hongkong.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Hong Kong University Press, 2017. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in HKSO for personal use (for details see http://www.hongkong.universitypressscholarship.com/page/privacy-policy).date: 26 April 2018

Concrete Jungle or Geocultural Cipher? Reading Lineage into the Perils and Prospects of Metro Manila

Concrete Jungle or Geocultural Cipher? Reading Lineage into the Perils and Prospects of Metro Manila

(p.61) Chapter 4 Concrete Jungle or Geocultural Cipher? Reading Lineage into the Perils and Prospects of Metro Manila
Messy Urbanism

José Edgardo A. Gomez

Hong Kong University Press

With a daytime population breaching the 12 million mark, Metropolitan Manila, capital region of the Philippines, presents itself as a sketch of urban anarchy to the casual observer. Despite successful drives in the last decade to tidy its main streets, squalor, din, and recalcitrant slum-dwellers remain ensconced in ill-defined spaces while the rush-hour surge of commuters vies with the tempo of Jakarta and Bangkok for most-gridlocked sprawl in Southeast Asia. Borrowing the approach of forest-canopy scientists, this study initially reframes the messy urbanism as a storeyed-mosaic. It describes the metropolis spatially and experientially, starting with street-level transgressions of hawkers versus pedestrians, through the infrastructure that forms its mid-rise entanglements, and up to the billboards and skyscrapers that hustle to hoard public views, swamping the popular imagination with media icons and subtle temptation. Amid increasingly effective attempts by government to sort out this city-hodgepodge, the author concludes that the forces of order and chaos seem to fall into a deeper pattern of cultural physicality. This alternative decoding of Metro Manila’s landscape resonates with a cosmological schema endemic to Austronesian communities, which suggests an impulse towards a distinct spatial hierarchy that emplaces citizens and artifacts in both the literal and figurative senses.

Keywords:   Urban anarchy, Urban landscapes, Urbanism, Metro Manila

Hong Kong Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .