This study examines how autonomy in protest camps is enabled by and manifested through architecture. Although the importance of space for the struggles for autonomy in protest camps has been recognized in recent research, their architecture has not been widely examined in this respect. This study uses empirical data collected from four different protest camps during 2015–2017 to examine the role of architecture for the struggles for autonomy. The study found that architecture is essential in creating protest camps’ autonomy from the status quo. Furthermore, the results suggest that protesters engage especially with Do-It-Yourself -architecture to organize their lifeworlds in a way that allows, enforces, and reflects their alternative societal structures and practices, thus also enforcing their autonomy as a prefigurative praxis. Overall, the findings of this research suggest that architecture plays a significant role in both creating and manifesting autonomy in protest camps, thus adding architecture as a significant element to be analyzed in protest camps and expanding the existing field of research.
- Do-It-Yourself (DIY)-architecture
- Protest camps