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Title: Introduzione a "La città come testo" : Atti del convegno (Trieste, 3 dicembre 2003)
Authors: Gefter Wondrich, Roberta
Keywords: City as literary mythCity in 19th-century literatureMetropolis in literature
Issue Date: 2003
Publisher: EUT Edizioni Università di Trieste
Source: Roberta Gefter Wondrich "Introduzione a 'La città come testo' : Atti del convegno (Trieste, 3 dicembre 2003), in: Prospero, X (2003), pp. 7-14
Series/Report no.: Prospero. Rivista di culture anglo-germaniche
X (2003)
Background and mould of a sizeable part of modern literature, the city has often developed into a literary myth. Be it a metropolis like London or Berlin, or a cosmopolitan area in Mitteleuropa like Trieste or Prague, it is possible to consider the city as a semantic space, a representation of a text open to multiple and different interpretations.
Literature helps to ‘create’ a city as much as architects do, as Kevin Lynch has stated about Dickens’ London: the writer builds the perception readers have of a place, and the way it is imagined by his/her readers. This can be clearly exemplified by 19th-century literature, in which cities like Paris, London and Vienna were rebuilt like works of art to celebrate their historical achievements, and took their place in the collective unconscious as much as the characters of the most famous novels of the time.
In literature, the city becomes then an existential topos: the place in which the world’s complexity is discovered; the interior and mental landscape; the place of modernity with its tensions and difficult appeasement between individuality and community; paysage moralisé and infinite; discordant place of aporias.
Type: Article
ISSN: 1123-2684
Appears in Collections:2003 / 10 Prospero. Rivista di culture anglo-germaniche

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