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White, Wide and Scattered: Picturing (Her) Housing Career
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Architecture. (Critical Studies in Architecture)
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Architecture. (Critical Studies in Architecture)
2016 (English)In: This Thing Called Theory / [ed] Teresa Stoppani, Giorgio Ponzo, George Themistokleous, London: Routledge , 2016Chapter in book (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

It is in the seductive space of real estate that finance and architecture find the space to flirt, collaborating on the shaping of brains, minds, and bodies through biopolitical and noological processes of subject formation, of assujettissement. Our real estate “choices” — it is as choices that they are presented to us as too often ingenuousaffect addled consumers — are conditioned by exposure to image worlds that over-determine how interior environmental niches are carved out, and how subjects and environments are co-produced.

The phenomenon of contemporary real estate also includes the rise of the entrepreneurial subject that we, with an irreverent nod to Maurizio Lazzarato’s formulation, call the ‘indebted woman’. Who is this ‘indebted woman’ and how has she come to be captured by the curated interior environments of contemporary real-estate? We will argue that the aesthetic figure of the ‘indebted woman’, who we frame for the purposes of our polemic, is diagrammatically captured in three ways: 1. By a milieu of ubiquitous whiteness producing the illusion of an infinitely receding horizon of possibilities; 2. By the recurring motifs of designerly objects placed so as to appear casually scattered, producing a mood of restlessness, a potential of mobility that endlessly defers a capacity to settle in and really make herself at home; 3. By the wide-angle framing of the real-estate image, which encloses her in a co-productive exchange between curated interior and ‘point of view’, with the result of over-determining her subjectivity as a biopolitically and noologically subjected subject. [HR1] Our[HF2]  plan is to picture these diagrams of capture, all of which are amply illustrated in the professionally produced real-estate imagery that provides content for real-estate websites like,, design blogs, and the real-estate pages of the daily press. WAs such, we propose to picture the ‘housing career’ of the indebted woman, and to do this we will take recourse to a fledgling theoretical framework we denominate feminist real-estate theory. We use this formulation as both a provocation, and to test what can be achieved with this ‘thing called theory’. Whether this theory will prove to be merely a tool of analysis, or else a means of critically projecting into what otherwise risks being a foreclosed future, is an issue, the risks and promises of which, we hope to discuss in our closing remarks.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
London: Routledge , 2016.
, Critiques
Keyword [en]
real estate theory, feminist theory, architectural theory
National Category
Research subject
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-193068OAI: diva2:974884

QC 20161013

Available from: 2016-09-27 Created: 2016-09-27 Last updated: 2016-10-13Bibliographically approved

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