Conference: Urban Modernisation and Representations of the Working Class. 1950-1975

On the 25th and 26th of May we run a conference on ‘slum’ clearance and redevelopment schemes and ways in which members of the working class were represented in visual culture between c1950 and 1975.

We had speakers presenting their research from across Europe. In five sessions, synergies became apparent on how media supported perceptions and understanding of deserving and undeserving recipients of social housing; causes for the sometimes very short life-spans of social housing estates; satirical and serious reflections on construction and design flaws and ways in which former residents remember the lost streets today. Abstracts to all presentations are here.

The well-attended conference brought together researchers with an interest in working class housing, its representations in various media, and the long-term effects on citizens. The last point became particularly apparent in the number of Salford residents, who attended the conference and whose questions and reflective appraisal of the presented research confirmed the relevance of addressing social housing and representations of the working class in critical research projects.

Our keynote address was given by Prof Miles Glendinning,  Director of the Scottish Centre for Conservation Studies and Professor of Architectural Conservation at the University of Edinburgh. His lecture: “Urban Modernisation – the Global Context: State intervention, modern architecture and ‘slum’ clearance across the world” was recorded and can be viewed below.

Find the keynote lecture here:

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