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Politecnico di Milano (2016)

Life at the edge of the desert. Planning strategies for the Negev bedouin


Titre : Life at the edge of the desert. Planning strategies for the Negev bedouin


Université de soutenance : Politecnico di Milano

Grade : Tesi Specialistiche/Magistrali 2016

“Life at the Edge of the Desert” is a thesis project structured in two parts, starting from a research about Bedouin population in the Israeli Negev desert, and the challenges they face to find a vital living space in a contested land. In the past century the Bedouin had to gradually give up to their nomadic culture, dealing with the new Middle Eastern colonial geographies and living in a desert that was more and more tight by national borders. Western history considers them losers, part of an unrelenting urbanization process that wipes out all customs and ancestral knowledge. In this context, Israeli Bedouin are displaced people, moved and concentrated around the city of Be’er Sheva, clinging to a land and a rural lifestyle that the state does not recognize, because the Bedouin “dispersal” doesn’t fit into the formal development schemes of the region. But nevertheless Bedouin prove us to be an extremely resistant community, experiencing a continuous growth and capable of colonizing the desert in spite of the strong powers. The Negev desert is a product of two geographies : the state one is organized, controlled and fights the advancing desert with much effort ; the Bedouin one instead is chaotic, informal, and lives within the desert itself and its topography. The second half of the thesis has birth in between these two visions, and proposes a strategy for a third hybrid geography, an alternative development strategy for the Northern Negev. The project sees the use of the public water infrastructure as a basic tool to develop the desert through a network of necessities, a rhizome of invisible infrastructural strings, spreading on and under the landscape. This network works as a first driver for the development of specific catalyst programs, such as commerce, education and health care services, and it envisions around them a further growth of spontaneous and informal collective spaces and events. This alternative development values both new towns and Bedouin rurality ; it connects them, it roots them to the landscape, and it enriches its most impoverished communities with always different services and programs, giving them a basic structure for a future expansion.

Mots clés : beduini ; Israele ; strategia ; villaggi ; deserto ; programmi ; infrastrutture ; acqua ; sabbia ; territorio ; climate — bedouin ; Israel ; strategy ; village ; desert ; program ; infrastructure ; water ; sand ; territory ; climate


Page publiée le 13 février 2017, mise à jour le 13 septembre 2018