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School of Arts and Humanities

The banality of colonization: suburbia in the West Bank

As part of the 46th annual Martin Centre Lectures at the Department of Architecture, Professor David Newman of Ben-Gurion University will discuss the establishment of settlements in the West Bank.

The establishment of settlements in the West Bank is normally analysed through the prism of political colonization and occupation. The process through which this settlement project has reached almost 400,000 residents is less documented.

David Newman presents the nature of the planning process which has been used as a means of implementing the political objectives. In particular, the process of suburbanization, cheap land, the construction of transportation infrastucture and the development of a commuter belt to the major centres of Tel Aviv and Jerusalem provide the mechanisms through which settlers have been attracted to these communities.

The "opening" of the Green Line has brought about a sharp discontinuity in the price of land, facilitating optimal costs in those parts of the West Bank which are in closest geographical proximity to the border. The impact of suburban colonization has also had a long term impact on the changing priorities of land zoning and the promotion of peripheral region development.

Professor David Newman is Dean of the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences and holds the Professorial Chair in
Geopolitics at Ben-Gurion University in the Negev. Editor of the journal Geopolitics until2014, Prof Newman's research
focuses on territorial dimensions of ethnic and national conflict, the functions and significances of borders, with a regional
focus on Israel, Palestine and the Middle East.

The lecture will be held on Wednesday 25 November from 1:15-2:14 in Lecture Room 1 at the Department of Architecture. 

 For more information, see the event description, and the full schedule of Martin Centre Lectures this term, or visit

David Newman