Strangely familiar! Or, what the smell of grease revealed about my curious self

Shayya, F ORCID: 2017, Strangely familiar! Or, what the smell of grease revealed about my curious self , in: PhD By Design Conference, 3/04/17, Sheffield, United Kingdom.

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It’s a windy, cold February Saturday at The Imperial War Museum in Manchester. I stand next to a 1979 Leopard patrol vehicle and a WWII T34 tank when a strong, thick, nauseating smell takes me 23 years back to a boyish childhood memory. I recall climbing on the tracks of a yellow Caterpillar dozer, and the same industrial, greasy smell filling my careless nostrils. Never did I think that track roller lubricant can incite such affects, smells, and attachments in my becoming, connecting—with the least reflexivity—what I have become to believe in as a researching-adult to what I have experienced as a playing-boy. I became an architect by training and through a strong desire for shaping the built environment, but I have come a long way engaging with the humanities and social sciences and shifting my focus to sociotechnical relations and urban assemblages. My PhD research investigates two main lines: how militarized sociotechnical inscriptions serve as actualizations of military strategy in/through urban contexts; and the extent of the demilitarization gap within the transfer of military technology to law enforcement. I trace the social life of Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected vehicles, known as MRAPs, as they circulate back to U.S. territory and into the hands of law enforcement agencies after their military service in the war on Iraq and Afghanistan. But, how does my boyish play affect my current research interests? How can my molar male-technical-persona become a molecular line of critique against militarization? and, what can becoming help me understand about myself and my research? It constantly intrigues me how my lines of research curiosity and theoretical framing emerge as thresholds of my “self” becoming between multiplicities of architectural knowledge, political practice, ethical reflexivity, and affective experience. It intrigues me how the greasy smell of lubricant connects military and civilian worlds in my head.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Other)
Schools: Schools > School of Computing, Science and Engineering
Depositing User: Dr Fadi Shayya
Date Deposited: 13 Dec 2022 10:27
Last Modified: 13 Dec 2022 10:27

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