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Disability and Leisure

Borders of Theme Parks

Analysis through Observation. Jele, N. Unit 15X. 2021
Analysis through Observation. Jele, N. Unit 15X. 2021

Nobubele Jele

MArch 2021

Unit Leader: Dr Finzi Saidi
Unit Leader: Jabu Makhubu
Unit Tutor: Dickson Adu-Agyei
Unit Tutor: Mathebe Aphane
Unit Assistant: Nomalanga Mahlangu

UNIT 15X︎︎︎
Toxic [Urban] Landscapes
“Every public space, whether religious or political or ethnic in character, displays a variety of symbols, inscriptions, images , monuments not as works of art but to remind people of their civic privilege and duties and tacitly to exclude the outsider”.
- John Brinckerhoff Jackson (1984)

The project is located in Gold Reef City Theme Park specifically focused on vision, hearing and touch challenges. This is significant in light of the growing number of differently abled persons in Johannesburg and their ability to access leisure play places. In J B Jackson’s book Discovering the Vernacular Landscape he suggests that spatial organisation aims to classify things/ occupations and people and separate them (Jackson 1984:13). This thesis aims to reveal the classifications in Gold Reef City Theme Park that have an impact on universal access for all persons. In addition, based on Akkar's (2005) study on the importance of public spaces as landscapes that enrich and increase the quality of the lives of inhabitants, the degree of wealth, and the essence of community, this thesis ultimately offers theme parks as tools for reintegration through participation and reimagines these landscapes as universally accessible for a wider range of social groups (Akkar 2005:85).

Leisure is essential for the mind, body and spirit which Burke suggests must not “be in a state of constant tension” with work (Burke 1995:5). Theme parks engage with the mind, body and spirit, where time and space is manipulated and the users are immersed in Fantasy (Massey 2005:9). This will be the lens through which we will examine the environmental barriers in Gold Reef City.  

Leisure, Theme park, Universal Access, Reintegration

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