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Making Genus: Exploring Gender Roles Within Utopian Societies

Part 2 Dissertation 2021
Dariana Nistor
University of Huddersfield Huddersfield | UK
Social constructs dictate a set of pre-defined social institutions which shape spatial agencies in a self-sustaining, never-ending exercise. Looking at the world through a gendered lens creates a hierarchical structure founded on binary terms, forming power structures, social boundaries and default identity expectations. These social thresholds dictate the way in which the built environment is created and the manner in which it operates: a gendered perpetuum mobile running on fetishised universality.

Concerned with the social and architectural implications of living in a post-gender world, the ‘Making Genus’ thesis is a thought experiment on a utopian society. Deeply rooted in utopian feminist science-fiction, the thesis takes the shape of a travelogue belonging to a traveller-protagonist who visits the utopian island, sharing their experience through social media posts, blog content and digital sketches. Constructed on several literary narrative planes and situated at the intersection of multi-dimensional media (writing, graphics and the moving image), the work draws on feminist tactics which question the conventionality of traditional academic writing and the universality of graphical representation.

‘Making Genus’ is defined by an architectural language that moves away from the gendered reality, a language impregnated with ideas of utopian dreams, environmental consciousness, social equality and kinship.

(“I come with empty hands and the desire to unbuild walls.” – Ursula K. Le Guin)

Dariana Nistor

Nic Clear
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