Awarding of the Ernst Reuter Prize to the Joint Center's project member Ryanne Flock
News from Dec 02, 2022
On December 2, 2022, as part of the annual Founders' Day festivities at Freie Universität Berlin, the Ernst Reuter Awards for the best doctoral theses had been announced; one of the awards was conferred on project member Ryanne Flock (“Social Worlds: China's Cities as Spaces of Worldmaking”) for the dissertation on “The social production of public space in urban China during the reform period: Appropriations and negotiation processes between local state and ‘vagabonds’ in Guangzhou”.
Ryanne Flock studied China Studies, Sociology and Economics at Free University and Humboldt University Berlin. Subsequently, she worked as research associate at the DFG project “Megacities-Megachallenge. Informal Dynamics of Global Change” in Guangzhou, followed by a position as lecturer and coordinator of the master program Modern East Asian Studies at Goethe University Frankfurt/Main.
Her dissertation examined the social production of public space in Guangzhou in the course of appropriations and negotiations between the local state as well as street vendors, fortune tellers and beggars. The local state produces public urban space in the service of modernization and national strengthening, and aims to exclude disruptive elements, e.g. poverty. However, spatial culture and patterns of control of public order emerge in the interaction of actors. Even the marginalized shape how public space functions socially. In addition to new data, the work offers to differentiate our image of China and its cities as well as to reconsider "public space," whose idealization also blocks the view of our urban reality. The dissertation was written under the supervision of Prof. Dr. Gransow and Prof. Dr. Meyer-Clement at the Institute of Chinese Studies, Department of History and Cultural Studies at Freie Universität Berlin.