ABSTRACT

Every society evolves characteristic conceptions and uses of space, and as a society changes so too do its spaces. As Henri Lefebvre, probably the most influential theorist of space, insists, this relationship is dialectical: a change in the concept of space is not simply the expression of social change, it is also its vehicle and its agent, ‘its tomb as well as its cradle’.1 Each mode of spatial experience, moreover, embodies particular apprehensions and layerings of time – whether it be the comforting nesting of personal rhythms of birth, marriage and death within the higher passions of the annual liturgical cycle inside the portals of a Christian church, or the abstracted space-time of modern science, where both dimensions of being lose their sacred, aesthetic and moral significance as they are first represented, then experienced, as neutral, uniform, linear modes of extension, ‘the organizing medium of modernity’s institutional dynamism’.2