Istanbul périphéries

Istanbul is  a tremedously big city which counts more than 19 million  habitants though the official numbers says that it’s about 14 billion. Each year, each season and each morning the city gets bigger while its borders remain the same. The construction sector works both in favour of maintaining the delusion of economic prosperity and in creating an enriching  liberal-islamist class.

While the extension of the city towards its suburbs generates many luxury complexes the gentrification projects in the historical neighborhoods of İstanbul are modifying radically the city’s collective memory and this, even to the extent which the landmarks gets disappear and a savage individualism takes over the old neighborhood relationships. Although the number of constructions increases without cease İstanbul is one of the rare metropols in which the amount of the appartments goes beyond the demand of its habitants. Construction has an important place in country’s economy as well as in social engineering; the shopping centers and the mosques here constitute remarkable metaphores in which the ideology of the ruling party, AKP ( Justice and Developpement Party),  gets concrete. It should not be neglected that the gigantomania serves also as a display of political power. To this we can also add the neo-ottoman notes which eventually gave rise  to the Gezi park protest in 2013 and rapidly extended to the whole country. This date marks a turning point in government’s history and in destruction of spatial and temporal landmarks.

This serie has been realized for the Sci.Po Lille magazine in order to show both the dimension of the relentless destruction of natural areas and the changing socio-historical texture in İstanbul.


Reportage pour le magazine de Sciences Po. Lille, Le Jeu de l’Oie, Autumn 2015