Residential Architecture As A Means Of Showcasing Western Modernization: The Case Of Tehran (1963-1979)



Modernization programs came along with the 1963 White Revolution, transformed socio-spatial organization of the capital city of Tehran. However, implementation of modernization in Iran was, indeed, associated with Westernization, which contributed largely to reproduce uneven urban development, exacerbate the class divisions and develop a kind of fetishism of urbanization in Iranian society of 1970s. Modernizing the society in the image of the west and in particular the United States majorly fascinated the upper classes (since they could afford living in the promoted way), and the more their fascination with westernized way of living developed, the more they become alienated from the rest of society. Accordingly, this study aims at conducting a critical analysis of impacts of this very modernizing in the image of the west in particular in the domain of housing as one of its crucial geographical materialization in Tehran. Through this analysis, it is expecting to get a broader understanding of how fetishism of urbanism, pursuing for an improved-place image, widening socio-spatial segregation of social classes due to their income level and urban experiences of modernization process differentiated through the agency of class led to the emergence of crowds of masses who became one important source of urban uprising stimulated the 1979 Revolution.



KEYWORDS: Iranian modernization, westernization, fetishism of urbanization, urbanism, alienation.

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