Homo Metropolitanus as a New Flâneur: A Wander through Significant City Places

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Abstract:

Flâneur is a wanderer. Not a wanderer of any sort; he is a wandererartist and a wanderer-connoisseur, strolling along the boulevards of 19th century Paris and the banks of the Seine River, losing his way in city alleys, sitting by little cafes. He continues his endless (deceptively purposeless) wander around the city because he wants to reveal scent, ambience, and scenery in its atmosphere. In turn, the city requites with all its beauty.

The present publication is an invitation to an analogous journey across significant places of a contemporary city. It will be neither Paris nor present-day London, New York, Mexico City, or Tokyo, but a modern city – METROPOLIS – an existential space for a human being. The quality of this space determines the quality of our lives. In my view, the space of a metropolis, as the space of a past city, significantly influences the way we feel: whether we are happy, satisfied, or open to others; whether we believe in ourselves or have inspirations to work, etc. If we assume that all the above mentioned is true, we will also agree with the fact that the purpose of this work is to draw attention to those factors of a city which were of great importance in the past, yet at present are in the process of devaluation. Therefore, let us begin our wander around the METROPOLIS accompanied by the one who knows the place best – Homo metropolitanus. We should not treat Homo metropolitanus as an incognito, since day by day each of us finds a greater number of his traits in ourselves. Homo metropolitanus is ours, as opposed to Dickens's “Ghost of Christmas future” (Dickens 2003).

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 1, 2011

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  • Natural Environment and Culture in the Mediterranean Region II
    The Mediterranean Basin is the largest of the five Mediterranean-climate regions, and one of the largest archipelagos in the world. The basin is located at the intersection of two major landmasses, Eurasia and Africa; and has around five thousand islands, which contribute much to its high diversity and spectacular scenery. This volume continues the analysis of the changes and impacts experienced by the native flora and fauna of the Basin first expounded in 'Natural Environment and Culture in the Mediterranean Region'.
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