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An Urban Ecology of Seoul's Nanjido Landfill Park

Kim, Jeong Hye; (2018) An Urban Ecology of Seoul's Nanjido Landfill Park. Doctoral thesis (Ph.D), UCL (University College London).

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Abstract

This thesis examines the Nanjido region in Seoul, the site’s transformation from Nanjido Landfill (1978-1992) to the World Cup Park (2002-present) and its relation to the urban ecology within the context of the city’s urban development during the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries. The empirical field work on Nanjido Landfill and the Park constitutes the structure of the research, and the study analyses the urban ecological meanings of the site’s two distinct forms by consolidating them with key theories: the Lefebvrian urban theory developed by Andy Merrifield, the relational ecological theory of Félix Guattari and Lorraine Code’s epistemological approach to ecology. Throughout the thesis, Zygmunt Bauman’s analysis of waste in a global era, originally drawn from Mary Douglas’s discourse on purity-dirt, provides the essential ground upon which to interpret urban development as a method of sanitisation that manages the material and immaterial layers of the urban space. The research, consisting of five chapters, explores how a set of relational environmental and social ecological factors constituted the governing power’s sanitary management of Nanjido Landfill and Landfill Park and, thus, in reverse, determined the site’s urban ecology. First, the study examines Nanjido’s environmental transformations in association with South Korea’s shifting political and economic situations. Second, I delineate how Seoul City had controlled wasted populations, i.e. the ragpickers, and the sanitary environment by means of DDT during its urbanization processes. Third, I investigate the inhabited landfill of Nanjido and illuminate the borderline characteristics of the landfill habitat’s wasted environment and its community. Fourth, I examine the regeneration of the Landfill into the Landfill Park within globalized environmentalist discourses, viewing the site’s transformation as another form of waste management in the new era. Fifth, I analyse site-specific works of art, which made disruptive attemps to explore the conflict between the invisible presence of the landfill’s garbage and its historical times, and the global and Korean society’s attempt to obscure that past. As the first account of a landfill and landfill-turned-park of South Korea, illuminated from an urban ecological perspective, this study demonstrates that the modern norm of sanitisation is still applied to urban re/development, and suggests the relational dynamics of environmental and social ecologies as a revisioned lens to view urban re/development.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Qualification: Ph.D
Title: An Urban Ecology of Seoul's Nanjido Landfill Park
Event: UCL (University College London)
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © The Author 2018. Original content in this thesis is licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) Licence (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/). Any third-party copyright material present remains the property of its respective owner(s) and is licensed under its existing terms. Access may initially be restricted at the author’s request. - Third party copyright material has been removed from this e-thesis.
Keywords: urban, ecology, Seoul, landfill, park, architecture, landscape, sanitation, waste, environment, environmentalism, place, regeneration
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment > The Bartlett School of Architecture
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10063653
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