Framing Places is an account of the nexus between place and power, investigating how the built forms of architecture and urban design act as mediators of social practices of power. Explored through a range of theories and case studies, this examination shows how lives are 'framed' within the clusters of rooms, buildings, streets and cities. These silent framings of everyday life also mediate practices of coercion, seduction and authorization as architects and urban designers engage with the articulation of dreams; imagining and constructing a 'better' future in someone's interest.

This second edition has been thoroughly revised and updated to include a look at the recent Grollo Tower development in Melbourne and a critique on Euralille, a new quarter development in Northern France. The book draws from a broad range of methodology including:

  • analysis of spatial structure
  • discourse analysis
  • phenomenology.

These approaches are woven together through a series of narratives on specific cities - Berlin, Beijing and Bangkok - and global building types including the corporate tower, shopping mall, domestic house and enclave.

chapter |7 pages


part I|50 pages

Frames of Theorization

chapter 1|8 pages


chapter 2|13 pages


chapter 3|12 pages


chapter 4|14 pages


part II|55 pages

Centres of Power

chapter 5|18 pages

Take Your Breath Away


chapter 6|18 pages

Hidden Power


chapter 7|17 pages

Paths to Democracy


part III|61 pages

Global Types

chapter 8|19 pages

Tall Storeys

The Corporate Tower

chapter 9|19 pages

Inverted City

The Shopping Mall

chapter 10|19 pages

Domestic Desires

House and Enclave

part IV|27 pages


chapter 11|13 pages

A Sign for the 21st Century


chapter 12|11 pages

Rust and Irony

Rottnest Island

part V|16 pages


chapter 13|14 pages

Liberty and Complicity