We are using ‘Festival’ as a phenomenon that incorporates ritual and carnival and also public events which transform the city in some way.

1 CITY FESTIVALS IN HISTORY

Past and present urban festivals and their settings in relation to the idea of ‘the good city’
What is the relationship between representations of festivals and the original event they often re-enact? Is there a distinction between some festivals that do this and others where historic re-enactments are undertaken?
How has the festival and its architecture evolved and adapted over time?
Are staged reconstructions of past places and events valid?
Festivals that no longer exist but continue to have historical and cultural resonance in the host city
Existing festivals that have historical longevity and continue to evolve
An examination of festivals that have recently been ‘invented’ to respond to new circumstances

2 CITY FESTIVALS TODAY

What is ritual in today’s rationalistic, globalised and post-symbolic age?
What forms of collective participation can the civic realm sustain in the twenty-first century?
Can there be any meaningful form of collective representation in our predominantly individualistic and globalised society?
What is the value, if any, of festivals in a virtual era and is there such a thing as a virtual festival?
Examples of good practice in festival?
Could landscapes and cities be designed to nurture festive activity?

3 THE THEORY AND POLITICS OF THE FESTIVAL

Questions regarding the commodification of festive space
An examination of modern critiques of the civic realm from Surrealism to the Situationists; from Deleuze’s ideas of the festival as irrecommençable to Lefebvre’s early suggestions that revolution was an ‘incessant popular festival’; or Gadamer’s belief that artistic festivals do not emerge from communities but enable individuals to create communities.
Do changes in external factors such as politics and economics affect festival practice?
How is urban experience enhanced, altered, or framed by festivals?
How does the participation or exclusion of particular groups of people affect the festival?
Are urban festivals, carnivals and rituals fundamentally inclusive or exclusive?
How are, or have been, questions of nationhood and identity been affected or framed by festival with reference to architecture?

4 CREATING FESTIVALS AND ARCHITECTURE

Can festivals be invented or do they emerge from other aspects of the civic?
Music festivals and music and festivals; is there a difference?
To what extent do festivals make architecture, or are festivals made by architecture?
The role of festival in conservation – intangible culture
Is festival a way of thinking?
Examples of new urban festive practice
Can festivals be invented or do they emerge from other aspects of the civic?
Music festivals and music and festivals; is there a difference?
To what extent do festivals make architecture, or are festivals made by architecture?
The role of festival in conservation – intangible culture
Is festival a way of thinking?
Examples of new urban festive practice