Sahare Kasera: a feministic fish market in Tanzania

Liisa Maria Matilda Wickström
Architecture and Extreme Environments

This project is a rethinking of the largest existing fish market in Tanga, a town in north east Tanzania. 


It is an exploration into how feminist thinking can inform an architecture that empowers women and thereby strengthen the encompassing community, in this case a fishing community that gains its livelihood from the site.

The socio-economic and environmental framework: site cycles, 24h to 60 years
The site: Sahara Kasera fish market - Tidal range: 4m (vertical) & 140m (horizontal)

The project investigates how architecture and space relates to gender equality - in this particularly relevant context – and how, through architecture, these inequalities might be acknowledged, addressed and ultimately reduced.

PLAN: domestic duties, value addition, fish market & seaweed farm + biogas station & water tower

The project takes a starting point in the already existing female activities in the Tanzanian coastal communities.

Seaweed farming is a common livelihood for women. It has a great potential for female empowerment but is challenged by climate change and lack of inputs. The new Sahare Kasera pier offers proper facilities, like in-built drying racks and storage, as well as a floating seaweed farm, that enables more climate resilient deep-water cultivation.

The seaweed becomes the female raw product, in comparison to men’s fish. By adding an extra raw product on site, the project creates more stability and resilience in community. Now the families are not only depending on the daily catch, meaning too, that during the dangerous monsoon seasons the men does not have to risk their lives on the rough seas.

This does not only increase the safety of the men and the whole family’s income, it also develops the economic independence of the women.

Floating seaweed farm: High tide
Floating seaweed farm: Low tide
SECTION: Fish market (day) - rainwater harvesting & ice production for better hygiene
SECTION: Fish market (night) - fishing time & light generated by the water tower
SECTION: Domestic Duties - laundry & nursery

Feminist theories and tactics have been the fundamental tool for understanding the context, to be able to create a pertinent architecture that challenges the lens through which architecture is shaped. The embodiment of these tactics into the spatial practice have also been a crucial part of the investigation of creating a female empowering architecture. This projects endeavours theory’s ability to be both an analytical and a creating tool.

Technology: the engine of female liberation
Materials: textures & lifecycles

Thesis program

Preliminary Studies: Rainwater harvesting & gender equality
I 2017-19 satser KADK på FN’s verdensmål
Det afspejler sig i forskning, undervisning og afgangsprojekter. Dette projekt har forholdt sig til følgende FN-mål:
Gender equality (5)
Decent work and economic growth (8)
Sustainable cities and communities (11)

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