• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

Cities are more important as cultural entities than their mere function as dormitories and industrial sites. Yet, the understanding of what makes a city ‘alive’ and appealing in cultural terms is still hotly contested - why are some cities so much more interesting, popular and successful than others? In this engaging discussion in the text City Life, Adrian Franklin takes the reader on a tour of contemporary western cities exploring their historical development and arguing that it is the transformative, ritual and performative qualities of successful cities that makes a difference. Emphasizing the importance of experience, the book represents the fluid complexity of the city as a living space, an environment and a posthumanist space of transformation. It will be of interest to all those engaging with the difficulties of urban life in sociology, human geography, tourism and cultural studies departments.

Making City Life
Making city life
Introduction: The Liquid Modern City

In its various manifestations, the dysfunctional city was a gathering together of doubts and misgivings about the modern city, doubts about humanist strivings to create a perfected way of living using the application of science – and social science – and the application of ‘correct’ design principles. I want to set the scene here for the multiple ways in which this humanist vision was softened, challenged, transformed and reversed. After the great age of blueprinted futures, Bauman's ‘solid modernity’, there were no singular urban projects that can be discerned to take their place. Rather, the city became the subject of multiple and heterogenous orderings, a more eclectic and confused modernity at all levels; politics, design, ...

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