MONU – magazine on urbanism #10 – Holy Urbanism


Can the view on cities get any bigger than through religion? Probably not. But we believe that a magazine on urbanism such as MONU, that appears only twice a year, can never have a too open perspective. Although the picture in this issue is big, and the contributions are diverse and have different focuses, one thing can be found that runs through almost this entire issue on Holy Urbanism. It is the convinction that Holy Urbanism in the contemporary city does not appear, and is not created any longer, merely by religion itself, but rather by a crossbreed of religion and economy. How such Holy Urbanism can be produced is explained by Daniel Hadley, for example, through the City Creek Center in Salt Lake City that quite clearly defies the dichotomy between market and temple cities, in his article A Mormon Megaproject. Thus, the City Creek Center is designed to be a centre of consumerism and economic production, whose purpose, nevertheless, is to ensure vitality in front of the nearby Temple Square. Sacred and commercial spaces seem increasingly to coalesce and create a kind of Foucaultian Heterotopia, an environment that is capable of juxtaposing in a single real place several spaces and several sites that are in themselves incompatible, as Colin Davies points out in his contribution The Sacred and the Holy: Transient Urban Spaces. Peter Dorsey in his piece Strata and Sound: The Adhan as an Urban Operating Procedure argues that contemporary Holy Urbanism is flourishing