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Title: The Olympic re-construction of East London in the economic, political, media and legal discourse : a possible theoretical framework for social-political action
Author: Desiderio, Antonio
ISNI:       0000 0004 6425 2469
Awarding Body: University of East London
Current Institution: University of East London
Date of Award: 2016
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This research investigates the preconditions for the Olympics-led process of urban transformation and change of East London. The pre-conditions are interpreted in terms of discourse (the economic, political, media, and legal discourse); which is conceived as reflecting and being reflected in the social, urban, economic and institutional order of the city. The aims of the work are, therefore, to understand: a) how such discourse is construed; b) how the complex of worldviews, ideologies, ideas, beliefs and interests that discourse expresses becomes constructed in the actual urban, social, economic and institutional order of the city; c) how discourse works in enacting and shaping processes of urban transformation and change in East London – and London as a whole. According to the official discourse, the transformation of East London into a site for tourism, shopping, leisure and lifestyle (which is aimed at attracting corporate investments) is the only possible way to enact processes of economic and social growth of ‘derelict’ urban areas. As it answers the requirements of global capital, which is regarded as an impersonal force, such model of urban renewal is represented as unquestionable. By exploring the possibility of a discourse theory of urban transformation and change (which emphasises the role of social-political action) and employing Critical Discourse Analysis as a methodological framework, the research demonstrates that the corporate-led transformation of East London is instead a social construction. In other words, it relies on the vision of the city of specific social actors. Such vision (which expresses sets of worldviews, ideologies, ideas, beliefs and interests) shapes the economic, political, media a d legal discourse; and is reflected at the same time in the urban form and functions, social order, economic organisation and institutional structure of the city.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral