Voguing on the Roof of Corporate Architecture: RIP Wu Yongning
Writer and philosopher Paul Preciado on the fragility of the individual body and its actions in the face of corporate architecture and the skyscraper in the global neoliberal city.
On November 8, 2017, Wu Yongning fell from the sixty-second floor of the Huayan International Center building in South China. The twenty-six-year-old, one of the world’s most famous roof-toppers, had 60,000 followers on Chinese social media platform Weibo. After having worked as a stuntman for the cinema industry in China, he decided to fully dedicate himself to urban roof-topping, photographing and filming himself on the top of China’s highest buildings, and making a living off the benefits related to internet advertising and social networking. His last video was a self-snuff: a recording of himself falling, uploaded on the internet only a few hours after his death. Since the video was posted online, I have been mesmerized by the image of his body struggling to find his grip, climbing back to the roof, and then suddenly, falling. The video doesn’t show him hitting the ground, as if the cityscape he is falling into was an infinite well of steel and glass. I have watched his fall over and over, trying to understand how, or why; hoping for the body to fly or for the force of gravity to invert its direction and make him jump back to the roof.
Was Wu Yongning’s roofing a sport, a hobby, a show, an artistic practice, a psycho-architectonic pathology, a suicidal attempt, a form of activism? Or perhaps the binary oppositions upon which all these notions rest (work/leisure, normal/pathological, health/disease, invisibility/spectacle, art/politics) are being displaced by the forms of production of subjectivity and representation that come along with financial capitalism, the techno-urbanization of the world, high connectivity, and the increasing automation of life.
Several elements characterize Wu Yongning’s performances and differentiate them from other extreme urban climbing stunts: his lack of interest in the process of climbing itself; his DIY and self-representation practice; his insistence on showing the fragility of the body in front of architecture; and the use of aesthetic codes more related to fashion than to extreme sports.
Urban climbing first became a mass media performance in the 1990s when Alain Robert, the French integral solo climber, was invited by the Swiss watch company Sector No Limits to climb several buildings to promote the brand. Until then, Alain Robert had only climbed natural vertical walls. Since then he has climbed the Empire State Building in New York (381m, 1994), the Eiffel Tower in Paris (300 m, 1997), the Sydney Opera House (1997), the Sears Tower in Chicago (443 m, 1999), the Petronas Towers in Malaysia (452m, 2009), the Taipei 101 building in Taiwan (508m, 2004), and the Burj Khalifa in Dubai (828m, 2011), just to name a few.
Although certainly influenced by Robert’s legacy, Wu Yongning was not a climber. Unlike Alain Robert and his followers Alex Honnold, Oleg Cricket, or Tiomka Pirniyázov, Yongning did not climb to the top of skyscrapers, communication towers, or bridges, but rather, the opposite. It is not ascending that Wu Yongning transformed into spectacle, but being hung: not the virile and heroic action of rising, but rather the foolish and more fragile decision to be suspended, to swing into the air. After coming up to the top of buildings by the technical means provided by architecture—stairs or elevators—he photographed and filmed himself walking on and hanging from their roofs. Hence his name: “rooftop daredevil.” In his videos, we see Wu Yongning installed on the roof of a skyscraper. We are left to contemplate the moment in which he lets himself hang, held first by both hands, only to release one of them while, holding his selfie stick and taking a picture of himself, drawing a pose with his body as if he were a top model. Yongning was not interested in representing the odyssey of climbing, but to show the direct, bodily, confrontational act of dangling over the void next to a glass wall.
I am fascinated by the image in which Yongning photographed himself lying on a narrow telecommunications tower looking sideways; one arm holding the camera, the other relaxed behind his head; his legs crossed, one foot in the air and the other overflowing the margin of the tower. Or the one in which one hand is gripping the highest end of an antenna, while the other is holding a selfie stick; a single foot resting on the thin metal column, he smiles as he floats over a city growing under his feet as a forest of towers. His body is the only organic form amongst endless geometric structures—from housing to transportation—in which life is captured, measured, and systematically reproduced—and yet invisible.
Rather than amongst urban climbers, Wu Yongning could be better inscribed within the genealogy of the circus acrobat and silent film performers such as Houdini, Buster Keaton, Charlie Chaplin, and Harold Lloyd. All of them are embodied thinkers of the Capitalocene: their movements and gestures pose the question of the end of sovereignty of the living (human) body in relation to technological systems of production and measurement, from the clock to the Cloud. From Houdini to Yongning, the question remains: what does it mean to be free within capitalism? How can the individual body gain agency in relation to the processes of mechanical production and abstraction? What is the place of bodily subjection within regimes of liberal freedom, or conversely of bodily freedom within regimes of liberal subjection?
Houdini’s sophisticated strategies to unchain his body and escape cages could be read, following Michel Foucault and Saidiya Hartmann, as an attempt to find a spectacular (or even magic) solution to the paradoxical relationship of subjection and restriction established between the body and institutions within modernity; starting with captivity and enslavement as conditions of capitalist growth, but also with the ever-proliferating architectures of discipline and confinement, including the domestic space, the prison, the asylum, and the factory. Setting himself free from every chain and every cage, Houdini repeated “scenes of subjection,” enacting a ritual of liberation as spectacle. On the other hand, the comical struggles of Harold Lloyd, Charlie Chaplin, and Buster Keaton with machines were ways of coming to terms with the increasing dislocation of the body within processes of mechanization, the automation of production, and industrial capitalism’s abstraction of value more widely. Buster Keaton, for instance, was often represented trying to keep balance on a fast-moving train; fighting to stand up on a running water wheel, or failing to jump between two buildings. Meanwhile, Charlie Chaplin’s wacky movements sprang from the struggle of the body to adapt to the rhythms and proportions of the factory. But it is Harold Lloyd’s emblematic sequence in the film Safety Last!, in which he hangs from the hands of a clock on the twelve-story Bolton Building in the Financial District of Los Angeles that Wu Yongning’s images more strongly echo.
Wu Yongning stages this aesthetic and political struggle for sovereignty within global neoliberalism through the direct and almost naked confrontation between the individual body and the skyscraper. Although he was not a climber, he had taken from “integral solo climbers” the extreme practices of walking at great height without any technical form of security. There is no harness, no rope, or helmet. Sometimes, there are not even shoes; only bare feet and hands. There is nothing that can save him in case of error; a stumble and the roof walker comes face to face with death. An extreme “corps à corps” between architecture and the living body, a relation both of erotization and combat, is thus produced.
The epidermic dimension of his images—the encounter between the human skin and the glossy skin of architecture—is intensified because of the fact that almost all Yongning’s photographs are selfies. The perspective is always one that shows the telescopic stick with which he holds his mobile phone in equilibrium. The image is absolutely intimate and totally spectacular. Unlike in Alain Robert’s urban performances, there is no audience. Only the Cloud is looking. The videos recorded are immediately uploaded to YouTube, with music and a brief legend indicating the building and the height. Roof-topping selfies produce an urban-intimate image of Wu Yongning with the global city: an almost pornographic close-up, where both the city and the body are erotically consumed.
In Wu Yongning’s performances, the antagonism between life and the Anthropocentric, necropolitical regime of production takes the form of a clash between the fragility of a single body and the giant corporate towers of the global South. Observing Yongning’s videos and photographs, we understand that these gestures of fragility are not, as we might have thought, the poses themselves, but the moments when, abandoning the pose, he tries to climb onto the roof again, often slipping and sliding a couple of times on the smooth surface of the wall, only to achieve it in a final jump. The moment of risk is one in which he stops being an element of architecture to become a living body again: that is where death, the condition of possibility of organic life, lurks. If neoliberalism is the regime in which politics have been displaced by the economy, we could say that the skyscraper presents itself as constitutively neoliberal since it embodies the substitution of architecture by economy. The skyscraper is the paradigmatic example of the abstraction of capitalism becoming architecture. The economic maximization of ground and rising values of the surrounding areas were arguments that justified vertical construction at the beginning of the twentieth century. However, we could use Naomi Klein’s analysis of the recent history of capitalism to understand that in contemporary global neoliberalism, the primacy of the skyscraper as a corporate architecture does not obey the maximization of the built surface, but to the spectacularization of capital. For Naomi Klein, the transformation of contemporary financial power depends on a displacement from production and the selling of goods to invention and the promotion of brands. “Forget factories,” Klein argues; “forget needing to maintain a huge workforce. Once they realized that their biggest profits flowed from manufacturing an image, these ‘hollow brands’ came to the conclusion that it didn’t really matter who made their products or how little they were paid.” And this is exactly the role of contemporary skyscrapers: branding the urban landscape.
It is within this process of branding that Yongning’s performances intervened. Hanging from the edge of corporate buildings and telecommunication towers, Wu Yongning produced his own body as a counter-brand; as a living-logo. The urban spectacularization of Wu Yongning’s tactical roof-toping worked as a subjective strategy to extract power out of the building’s brand and transfer it to his own personal body. What we see is the confrontation (in the form of an, alas, too fragile grip) of a corporate brand with a single body; a neoliberal, deadly combat between the financial goliath and a disenfranchised living being.
A similar technique of de-branding a building or transferring its power back to society was used by Turkish artist Banu Cennetoğlu at one of the most emblematic buildings in Tepebaşı, Istanbul: the Marmara Pera Hotel.  For thirty days in 2015, Cennetoğlu installed a screen on the roof of the building where a list of more than 22,342 known refugees, asylum seekers, and migrants who have died within, or at the borders of Europe since 1993, could be seen from sunset to sunrise. The content of each individual case on the list was visualized on a flickering screen, with one Turkish word appearing at a time. Thus, the names of migrants who died on the Mediterranean or within the soil of a supposedly democratic Europe could be seen on the emblem of economic growth and global capitalist success par excellence: corporate architecture.
This deadly opposition between the body and a certain political and economic regime has existed throughout time: between the body of the slave and the pyramids of Egypt; between the indigenous body and the mines of Potosi; between the African captive and the plantation economy; between the body of women and the task of normative heterosexual reproduction; between the soldier and the military mandate of fighting for the nation-state; between the animal and the industrialized farm and the slaughterhouse. Nevertheless, what seems specific to the global neoliberal face of the Capitalocene is that this antagonism opposes the totality of the living planet (Earth) with capitalism as a necropolitical regime. Only one of them will survive.
The term urban climbing is not a simple metaphor that compares natural rocky cliffs and mountains with ultramodern skyscrapers as vertical, scalable surfaces. Rather it invites us to think that, within the current necropolitical transformation of the Earth in the Capitalocene, architecture—both building and design, infrastructure and communication—has become our last natural environment. There are no more biophysical boundaries to be breached by mineral extraction, industrial food production, economic development, plastic overproduction, military surveillance, real state, and communication wiring. Architecture is the nature-cultural environment of global corporate capital. The hyper connected Petronas Twin Towers are the synthetic Annapurnas of financial capitalism. This is where Wu Yongning’s performances took place: between the glass wall and the blurry Cloud; within global marketplace of digital sociality, where outer space and intimate space is one, geological time is broken up into a myriad of selfies, and where the Earth as living organism is portrayed in the very act of disappearing.
While posing, hanging from the roof of a skyscraper, Wu Yongning mutated into an organic design object attached to a smooth glass wall: a sort of living pop-human sculpture; a gargoyle grafted on the edge of a cathedral of corporate capitalism. Wu Yongning’s poses recall one of the furtive figures that Antoni Gaudí inserted between the biblical characters and the canonical saints in one of the front porticoes of the Sagrada Familia: a young man holding the Orsini bomb, an explosive device invented by the Italian revolutionary Felice Orsini in 1857 and thrown against the imperial chariot of Napoleon III, killing eight and wounding numerous others. Napoleon was unharmed. Orsini, who suffered serious injuries during the attack, was arrested and guillotined a few months later. Shortly after, the anarchist Santiago Salvador Franch used the Orsini bomb in an attack on the Liceu Theater in Barcelona. Two years later, Gaudí sculpted his façade with a young man being given an Orsini bomb by the devil. He called it “The Temptation of Man.” In the case of Wu Yongning, the bomb is his own mobile phone, and the guillotine the edge of the abyss. According to Medieval historians, human gargoyles of churches and cathedrals represented sinners (drunks, beggars, prostitutes, heretics) suffering the tortures of hell. Hence, they often appear shouting or in the process of being transformed into an animal. Connected to the Cloud by the technical eye of his camera, and thus closer to machine than to animal, Wu Yongning was a technobaroque gargoyle; a human in the process of becoming drone.
Indeed, soon no human will ever go where Alain Robert and Wu Yongning dared to climb or to hang from. In the early 2000s, robotic window washers were designed to climb up the glass surfaces of skyscrapers to keep them clean and glossy: “Gekko Façade,” a cleaning company advertised, “is better than window washers, hanging precariously outside office windows on a swinging platform. Not only for the sheer glass it can cover—576 square meters per hour—but its suction cup feet allow it to stay safely attached while it cleans with a rotating brush, even on curved surfaces. It’s sufficiently nimble to get to all those hard to reach places like a Spiderman Roomba.” More recently, the Internet of Things company Flyver has designed and commercialized a drone intended to clean skyscrapers’ surfaces: “With the glass facades of modern skyscrapers,” they argue in promoting their “window cleaner drone,” “even a task as simple as window cleaning has become risky. On top of that, with so many windows, it’s pretty time consuming and simple point to the point where it doesn’t require any thought on the part of the window cleaner. Considering all these factors, a very serious question comes up. We already have robot vacuum cleaners keeping our floors clean, so why are we not using our flying robot to automate window cleaning and forever rid people of the stress and boredom of it?”
The drone specialized company Cleandrone credits the virtues of the drone for being able to gather three services that were before disconnected: deep cleaning, computer vision, and cloud services. “Cleandrone uses advanced proprietary computer vision, sensor fusion and artificial intelligence algorithms to detect and clean surfaces… A team of Cleandrones are designed to work autonomously under the coordination of a Ground Control System (GCS) and with automated docking stations that allow the drones to recharge batteries and change cleaning fluid to provide a fully automated cleaning solution.”  These drones are like a robotic Wu Yongning, hanging from the unreachable rooftops of the mountains of financial global capitalism. Or rather, Wu Yongning could be understood as the last human bringing affect and emotion to a place that will soon only be frequented by drones, where no forms of social and political life can take place.
It is this transformation of the inhabitable into a social and political space that is most striking about Wu Yongning’s images. In another video, we see him hanging from the edge of the vertical wall of a skyscraper holding on with just one hand. Suddenly, and in spite of the precarious grip, he strikes a pose: he looks for his best profile, sets one foot on the building wall, while crossing the other leg to form a triangle. Wu Yongning is roof-voguing 600 meters in the air.
Developed in the late 1970s by Afro-American and Latin-American queer and trans communities of the outskirts of New York, Atlanta, Washington, and Detroit, voguing represented a performative way of re-appropriating and re-signifying the cultural codes of high fashion and consumerism without access to its gender and class prerogatives. Class parody, gender crossing (mostly feminization), vanity, and narcissism were stylized bodily rituals where exclusion could turn into empowerment. But during the last twenty years, voguing has been increasingly detached from American urban queer communities to become a global code, almost a life style; a strategy to cope with the conditions of exclusion within hyper urban capitalist societies. Voguing is no longer taking place only within black ballrooms and queer clubs, but has been disseminated throughout global popular culture, from Madonna’s reappraisal of its performance style in the 1990s to contemporary clubs of the Global south.
Whereas performing voguing in the non-white queer American culture was a strategy of empowerment in relation to the American straight and white consumption culture, Wu Yongning's roof-voguing is the revenge of a disenfranchised body against the branding of urban space by global corporate architecture. Whereas ballroom mothers and Queens played with the performative codes of fashion and consumer culture, Wu Yongning, as an outsider of financial neoliberal success, intentionally performed with and into architecture’s corporate aesthetics, extracting its brand power to gain subjective agency and value. Network rumors say that Yongning was expecting to make 100,000 yuan (15,000 US dollars) for his last (failed) performance so that he could pay for his marriage party and his ailing mother’s medical expenses.
Wu Yongning allows us to trace the development of voguing in the internet era: from clubs to YouTube tutorials, videos, and Instagram images; and from queer communities of color to the global disenfranchised youth. In Yongning’s videos and images, it is the global city itself which has become the stage of confrontational voguing. As a multilayer swarm of routes and buildings in relation to which the human body sticks out as an organic oddity, the image of the city is as important as architecture is in relation to the position of the body and its gestures. Here, the catwalk no longer takes place in the club, but rather at the roof corners of corporate skyscrapers. The ballroom is floating in the Cloud—in the literal and digital sense of the word.
Unlike in Susan Sontag’s notion of camp aesthetic sensitivity that is often used to understand voguing, neither body nor city is presented in Yongning’s work under the prism of artifice, exaggeration, pastiche, or unnaturalness. On the contrary, the global urban baroque landscape of contemporary capitalism appears as ultimate nature; as the last mutation of evolution on Earth. Rather than irony or theatricality, this relationship between the body and the megalopolis invokes a Kantian encounter with the techno-sublime. Whereas the modern European romantic was a “wanderer above the sea of fog,” the global technobaroque walks above a sea of glass, capital, and information.
Saskia Sassen argues that “the frontier is a space where actors from different worlds have an encounter for which there are no established rules of engagement. Whereas the ‘historic’ frontier was at the edges of empire, today’s frontier is deep inside large, complex, and mixed global cities.” Looking at Wu Yongning’s practice, we could argue that in contemporary global cities, one of these new frontiers is not on the ground, but rather in the cloud(s); at the very limit between architecture and the sky. Between the individual and the network, between the body and the Cloud is a space where only machines and drones can venture. Wu Yongning’s oneiric task made this new frontier of the city visible.
As Keller Esterling has noted, corporate and infrastructure spaces created by global financial capitalism are beyond the traditional modern distinction between public and private. Hyperbolically using the language of “freedom,” corporate neoliberal space presents itself as a space beyond antagonisms that pervaded modern cities like class, gender, race, disability, or sexuality. But it is not that these struggles do not exist anymore. On the contrary, as Sassen argues, what characterizes urban corporate space is the intention to cancel traditional antagonisms and national borders by the process of “hard bordering.” Whereas interstate borders seem to have been torn down by the massive circulation of capital, hard, inner borders are proliferating, establishing new power relationships of gender, class, age, race, sexuality, and disability.
The rooftops and glass walls of skyscrapers are material metaphors for the impenetrability of financial architecture’s borders. The roof and the crystal surfaces of urban corporate towers are the opposite of the street: a place where nothing can happen, where no social encounter or political form of visibility can take place. Blunt and silent. Glossy and opaque. Wu Yongning’s interventions brought indeterminacy and risk to a place where politics and desire have been removed to the benefit of the image of financial power and social consensus.
There is yet a last frontier to cross: the biosphere. Wu Yongning seems to take a walk on the air, a “promenade aérienne,” like a flâneur at the limit of breathable atmosphere. He stands where the global capitalist city touches the edge of the ecosphere, where the Earth and extraterrestrial meet, as if he wanted to indicate the limit of the space that can be safely inhabited by humans. Wu Yongning’s walk into the void was the last step of a post-humanity before jumping out of the biosphere and traveling to Proxima Centauri b. Here it is the image of the astronaut hanging outside of a spacecraft in a repair mission that comes to mind, where the darkness of the galaxy has replaced the urban landscape. The acrobatics of the last humans in the Capitalocene is a spectacle of flight: a step taken to leave the biosphere before or right at the moment of dying.
Of all roof-toppers and YouTube urban acrobats, Wu Yongning was the most fairy and dreamy looking; the most androgynous, the less professionalized. His body’s apparent lightness and vulnerability in contrast to the verticality of architecture and the immensity of the urban landscape are captivating elements within Wu Yongning’s images, producing at the same time nausea and fascination; vertigo and respect. In front of the magnitude of Capitalocenic destruction, the affect of the urban sublime turns into dizziness and nostalgia; the fascination for death as force of political action. Some of Yongning’s many social media fans gathered for his public funeral. Surrounded by flowers and followers, Wu Yongning uncannily resembles an Ofelia who sunk into the digital flux of the financial economy and social media’s global river.
Whereas representation and image making were idealized within post-war democracies as necessary processes of political emancipation, Wu Yongning’s tactical urbanism and image making teach us that representation within contemporary neoliberalism is always done at the price of risking one’s life. Within contemporary technobaroque neoliberalism, the process of gaining visibility for those marginalized in terms of class, gender, race, or disability can’t contribute to produce value, political subjectivity, or agency without compromising their bodily and individual chances of survival. The image itself, already an algorithm, an abstract avatar able to produce more capital, and the subject, a brand, a normative solidification of heterogeneous and epigenetic processes of subjectification, might survive, but the body (of mammals) and the Earth will not.
1. I realize following We Yongning's traces that he is not the only one. In 2015 Andrey Retrovesky, 17 year-old-Russian “roofer” died after attempting to capture a photo of himself that would make it look as though he was falling from the top of a building.
2. Capitalism does not only refer to an economic system, but to a political regime, a way of extracting energy and reproducing life. The Capitalocene, Jason W. Moore argues, is the “Age of Capital: the era of capitalism as a world-ecology of power, capital, and nature.” Jason W. Moore ed., Anthropocene or Capitalocene? Nature, History and the Crisis of Capitalism (PM Press, Oakland, 2016), 6. Chinese specific surveillance of the internet does not prevent the “cloud” for being a planetary-scale infrastructure, without which Chinese economy will be outside of the digital marketplace on a worldwide scale. See: Roland Deibert, John Palfrey, Rafal Rohozonski, Jonathan Zittrain Eds, Access Controlled: The Shaping of Power, Rights, and Rule in Cyberspace, MIT Press, Cambridge, 2010.
3. See: Michel Foucault, Discipline and Punish. The Birth of the Prison, Penguin, London and New York, 1979; Saidiya Hartmann, Scenes of Subjection: Terror, Slavery and Self-Making in Nineteenth-Century America. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1997.
4. Naomi Klein, No is Not Enough: Defeating the New Shock Politics (London and New York: Penguin, 2017), 23. See also, Naomi Klein, No Logo: Taking Aim at the Brand Bullies (New York: Picador, 1999).
5. The relationship between branding and architecture was already present in the work of Le Corbusier, Mies van der Rohe, Charles and Ray Eames, and Frank Lloyd Wright, just to name a few. On the constitutive relationship between modern architecture, advertising and media see: Beatriz Colomina, Privacy and Publicity. Modern Architecture as Mass Media (Cambridge: MIT Press, 1994). About urbanism, marketing and branding see: Keith Dinnie, City Branding: Theory and Cases (London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2010); E. Kirby, A.M. Kent, “Architecture as brand: store design and brand identity,” Journal of Product & Brand Management 19, no. 6 (2010): 432–439.
6. Banu Cennetoğlu, List of 22.342 documented deaths of asylum seekers, refugees and migrants due to the restrictive policies of Fortress Europe, YAMA and The Marmara Pera, 2015. Curated by Övül Ö. Durmuşoğlu.
7. Alain Robert explains that documentary filmmaker Michele Radici wanted to establish a relationship between the ascent to the Utha sandstone tower and to the Calico Building in New York to show the harshness of contemporary cities. To climb a building in the city, Robert argued, is worse than to climb a mountain: “It is like being in a dessert, exhausted, without water…and then you faint and you don’t know any more if you are in the city.”
8. For the definition of “natureculture” as a concept emerging from the critique of Western dualism between nature and culture, see: Donna J. Haraway, The Companion Species Manifesto: Dogs, People, and Significant Otherness 1 (Chicago: Prickly Paradigm Press, 2003); and Bruno Latour, We Have Never Been Modern (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2003).
9. On the Cloud see: Metahaven, “Captives of the Cloud: Part 1,” e-flux journal 37 (September 2012).
10. Peter Murray, Window Cleaning Robots Making Their Way To Skyscraper Happy United Arab Emirates,” Singularity Hub (March, 13, 2013).
12. Cleandrone is part of the EU Research and Innovation program, supported with nearly eighty billion Euros of available funding. With the heavyweight political backing of Europe’s leaders and MEPs it is seen as a key driver of economic growth and job creation.
13. On Voguing and gender politics see: Tara Susman, Tara (2000) "The Vogue of Life: Fashion Culture, Identity, and the Dance of Survival in the Gay BalIs," disClosure: A Journal of Social Theory 9 (2000); Jack Halberstam, In A Queer Time and Place. Transgender Bodies, Subcultural Lives (New York: New York University Press, 2005), 157–8.
14. Susan Sontag, Notes on Camp, in Fabio Cleto ed., Camp: Queer Aestetics And the Performing Subject (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 1999).
15. Saskia Sassen, “Deep Inside the Global City,” e-flux Architecture (January 2018). See also: Saskia Sassen, “The Global City: Enabling Economic Intermediation and Bearing Its Costs,” City & Community 15, 2 (June 2016), 97–108.
16. See: Keller Easterling, Extrastatecraft. The Power of Infrastructure Space, Verso, London and New York, 2014.
17. Sassen, “Deep Inside the Global City.”
18. Proxima Centauri b is the closest inhabitable exoplanets to Earth, known today and the center of a current debates on the possibilities of extraterrestrial travel.