Oil Spaces traces petroleum’s impact through a range of territories from across the world, showing how industrially drilled petroleum and its refined products have played a major role in transforming the built environment in ways that are often not visible or recognized. Over the past century and a half, industrially drilled petroleum has powered factories, built cities, and sustained nation-states. It has fueled ways of life and visions of progress, modernity, and disaster.

In detailed international case studies, the contributors consider petroleum’s role in the built environment and the imagination. They study how petroleum and its infrastructure have served as a source of military conflict and political and economic power, inspiring efforts to create territories and reshape geographies and national boundaries. The authors trace ruptures and continuities between colonial and postcolonial frameworks, in locations as diverse as Sumatra, northeast China, Brazil, Nigeria, Tanzania, and Kuwait as well as heritage sites including former power stations in Italy and the port of Dunkirk, once a prime gateway through which petroleum entered Europe.

By revealing petroleum’s role in organizing and imagining space globally, this book takes up a key task in imagining the possibilities of a post-oil future. It will be invaluable reading to scholars and students of architectural and urban history, planning, and geography of sustainable urban environments.

part |18 pages


chapter 1|16 pages

Space, Time, and Oil

The Global Petroleumscape
Size: 0.85 MB

part I|108 pages

Oil, Agency, and Territoriality

chapter 2|22 pages

The Original North American Petroleumscape

Oil-and-Gas Empire, Petrochemical Nation
Size: 9.64 MB

chapter 3|23 pages

Petroleumscape as Battleground

Pladjoe, Pearl in the Crown of the Bataafsche Petroleum Maatschappij (BPM/Shell) in the Dutch East Indies
Size: 11.52 MB

chapter 4|18 pages

Mapping the Persian Gulf Petroleumscape

The Production of Territory, Territoriality, and Sovereignty
Size: 5.42 MB

chapter 5|25 pages

Between Visible and Invisible

ENI and the Building of the African Petroleumscape
Size: 12.02 MB

chapter 6|18 pages

The Offshore Petroleumscape

Grids, Gods, and Giants of the North Sea
Size: 5.80 MB

part II|82 pages

Oil, Materiality, and Cultural Practices

chapter 7|16 pages

Arab Oil Towns as Petro-Histories

Size: 3.80 MB

chapter 8|14 pages

Building Brazil's Petroleumscape on Land and Sea

Infrastructure, Expertise, and Technology
Size: 1.78 MB

chapter 9|17 pages

Precious Property

Water and Oil in Twentieth-Century Kuwait
Size: 6.39 MB

chapter 11|15 pages

“Production First, Livelihood Second”

The Life and Death of Worker-Peasant Model Villages in a Chinese Oil Field
Size: 5.96 MB

part III|72 pages

Oil Ecologies and Imaginaries

Size: 2.09 MB

chapter 13|17 pages

Antwerp's Petroleumscape

Imagining the Carbon Age
Size: 10.47 MB

chapter 14|20 pages

Power Stations and Petroleum Heritage in Italy

The Case of Porto Tolle
Size: 5.79 MB

chapter 15|18 pages

Petroleumscape as Heritage Landscape

The Case of the Dunkirk Port City Region
Size: 4.84 MB