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Planning southern Iraq: placing the progressive theories of Max Lock in Um Qasr, Margil, and Basra in the context of Iraqi national development, 1954–1956

Tosland, Ben (2019) Planning southern Iraq: placing the progressive theories of Max Lock in Um Qasr, Margil, and Basra in the context of Iraqi national development, 1954–1956. Planning Perspectives, 34 (6). pp. 1023-1044. ISSN 0266-5433. (doi:10.1080/02665433.2018.1468806) (KAR id:66967)

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https://doi.org/10.1080/02665433.2018.1468806

Abstract

Between 1954 and 1956, the architect, educator, and planner, Max Lock (1909–1988) produced a trilogy of plans to modernize the historical city of Basra and create new areas at Margil and Um Qasr in the south of Iraq. The New Basrah Plan was heavily inspired by the works of Patrick Geddes and aligned with contemporaries such as Lewis Mumford, Lock’s planning was progressive in scope and looked to differ from the planning of post-war principles in Britain through his notions of ‘civic surgery’. Contrary to this, his plans for Um Qasr and Margil focussed on infrastructure and the creation of more industrial areas not prioritizing people and place as highly as he did in the New Basrah Plan. Lock’s ‘Civic Surgery’ offered an alternative to mainstream thought by attempting to create usable, humanistic spaces, which hampered by politics and legislation, resulted in the plan’s shelving and were contradicted by his other works’ philosophies. New retrospective analysis of his underappreciated career reveals the complexities of his planning which this article demonstrates through the ‘failure’ of the New Basrah Plan and his plans at Um Qasr and Margil.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1080/02665433.2018.1468806
Uncontrolled keywords: Planning, architecture, modernization, modernism, Max Lock, Iraq
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Arts and Humanities > Kent School of Architecture and Planning
Depositing User: B.A. Tosland
Date Deposited: 09 May 2018 15:40 UTC
Last Modified: 16 Feb 2021 13:54 UTC
Resource URI: https://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/66967 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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