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Distributed for Hong Kong University Press

Death and Life of Nature in Asian Cities

Case studies from contemporary Asia on the intersection of nature and urban spaces.

Two processes are currently unfolding in diverse patterns across contemporary Asian cities: the displacement of nature in urban spaces, as well as the reimagining of nature’s place in the urban sphere. The rapid urbanization of Asia has provoked contentious debates and novel schemes about the role of nature in cities. Contributors to this volume gather case studies from across Asia to address projects of urban greening and other models for the integration of nature in urban life. The book also illustrates how the intersection of urban growth and urban nature is a sector rich with fresh ideas about urban planning, governance, and social life as debates and efforts to recover nature in the city provoke moral and ethical evaluations of the human ecology of city life.

224 pages | 16 color plates | 6 x 9

Asian Studies: General Asian Studies

Sociology: Demography and Human Ecology, Urban and Rural Sociology


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Table of Contents

Introduction: Urban Nature Brought to Life in an Age of Loss 1
Anne Rademacher and K. Sivaramakrishnan
1. Divine Excess: The Power of Accidents and Nature Spirits in Bangkok 26
Andrew Alan Johnson
2. Putting the Garden Back: Cultivating Life through Urban Gardening
in India 44
Camille Frazier
3. The Village at the End of the World: Ecologies of Urbanism in Climate
Crisis Imaginaries 64
Kasia Paprocki
4. The Singapore “Garden City”: The Death and Life of Nature in an
Asian City 82
Annu Jalais
5. The Absent Presence: Potholes in Urban India 102
Harris Solomon
6. The Death and Life of Urban Ecological Commons in Taipei 120
Tomonori Sugimoto
7. Making Land Out of Water: Ecologies of Urbanism, Property, and Loss 138
Shubhra Gururani
8. Concrete Ecology: Covering and Discovering Saigon’s Ecology in a
Time of Floods 159
Erik Harms
9. Keeping Pace with the Foodshed in Hangzhou 177
Caroline Merrifield
List of Contributors 197
Index 199

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