Constructing Place and National Identity through Architecture: Comparison between Contemporary China and Greece

Prof. Ho Hon Leung,
Associate Professor, Sociology Department, Department Chair, Chair of Steering Committee, Center for Social Science Research, State University of New York College at Oneonta

Date : 16th July 2012 (Monday)
Time : 4.00PM - 6.00PM
Venue: WLB 208, 2/F, Wing Lung Bank Building, Shaw Campus, HKBU

Half of the world construction sites take place in China. The postmodern architecture in Beijing and Shanghai grows like wild flowers at the expense of many important antiquities. However, the landscape in Greece seems to be timeless and eternal. From time to time, Greeks stage protests against any high-rises and postmodern architecture. In spite of the fact that there are many similarities between the two ancient civilizations: China and Greece, both of which had conquered and been conquered, were engaged in two world wars, civil wars, ruled by dictatorship in modern history, and started modernization but did not “take off” until early 80s, why is there a huge difference in ways of de/re/constructing these architectural pieces that signify their contemporary national identities? The purpose of this presentation attempts to explore the intertwining relationship between the construction of place and national identity and architecture in the contemporary China and Greece.