Questions Concerning Health: Stress and Wellness in Johannesburg

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At a moment when the world’s population increasingly lives in urban settings, the public health of cities—or the intersection of stress and wellness with architecture and urbanism—is a matter of pressing concern for designers. Questions Concerning Health reports on this critical terrain, focusing particularly on Johannesburg, South Africa (a notable test case in which the term “social equivalency,” used by epidemiologists, also carries considerable historical and spatial resonance). Among the findings of the studio’s research was that health is an intensively local phenomenon, which demands intensively local responses in the form of more sensitive architectural typologies as well as urban planning. Questions Concerning Health presents a number of essays from experts on urban health and Johannesburg in particular as well as the design proposals of eight students who participated in the research studio.