Recorridos, Intervenciones y Situaciones

Archive for April, 2012

Urban Meanderthals and the City of “Desire Lines”

Posted by Canto Rodado on April 25, 2012

The avoidance of pedlock and gridlock, then, induces another breed of flâneur, with an alternative form of desire path, one resulting not from the pedestrian’s unselfconscious obliviousness to the environment, but from a precipitously induced hyper-awareness. The resulting secondary desire paths adopted by those who are suddenly diverted from their trajectories are, indeed, not aimless but forced re-adjustments; the intentions of the pedestrian are redirected as a result of their objectives being obstructed. What results, I’d like to suggest, is yet another breed of flâneur. This one we might call: Flâneur 2.0.

For this new breed of Flâneur the hustle and bustle of the crowd is not to be observed at leisure, but to be avoided. The goal is not to aestheticize urban life while absorbing it, but to instrumentalize it while attempting to direct it in the name of efficiency and speed. The crowd is not to be followed but to be deliberately avoided, the urban grid of everyday life is not to be re-inscribed but to be exceeded.

Flâneur 2.0, no longer self-consciously critical of the techno-urban imperatives that morph around him, no longer taking a derive or deviation for its own sake, finds herself unwillingly and unwittingly having to smooth out the striated grid. Driven by invisible economic imperatives (imperatives that constitute the fish-bowl he swims in), Flâneur 2.0 is thrust kicking and screaming — sometimes literally — out of his habitual orbit by the Meanderthal. Nonetheless, though briefly discombobulated, Flâneur 2.0 quickly gets re-oriented, re-doubling his/her efforts for the sake of efficiency, mobility, speed, and capital. The phrase quoted at the beginning of this paper — “Down with Dawdling!” — undoubtedly had a certain currency in Walter Benjamin’s day. But the man who first uttered it could not have imagined that it would persist, nor what it would come to mean in the age of the Meanderthal.



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Dérive – drifting

Posted by Canto Rodado on April 14, 2012

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Psychogeographic Map

Posted by Canto Rodado on April 13, 2012

Psychogeographic Map of NYC for Situationist International Graduate Class

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Psychogeography: The Landscapes of Memory

Posted by Canto Rodado on April 12, 2012

Act as though, for instance, you were a traveler sitting next to the window of a railway carriage and describing to someone outside the carriage the changing views which you see outside.
-Freud describing free association, SE 12, p.135

Wordsworth’s “Tintern Abbey,” Elizabeth Bishop’s “Brazil,” Beethoven’s “Pastorale,” and Berlioz’s “Night on Bald Mountain”—landscape and the sense of place are instrumental in both aesthetic and imaginative experience, and to every person’s sense of self. This discussion will explore some of the ways that human memory and meaning are influenced by the features of the world that surround us, and how they offer the imagination streams of metaphor as well as sources of awe and inspiration, a mirror for the strangeness of existence, and a measure of the scales of being, both infinite (the grandeur of mountains) and infinitesimal (the ecosystem of an anthill). Psychogeography—the impact of landscape on the senses and on memory—will be considered from literary, child developmental, and neurological perspectives. The discussion will make specific reference to the changes of scene brought on by immigration and urbanization, in addition to addressing nostalgia for simpler modes of existence.

Participants: André Aciman, Vito Acconci, Russell Epstein, Matthew von Unwerth (moderator)   Mayo 31, 2008
Place, Imagination and Identity

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Situationist International – 1

Posted by Canto Rodado on April 11, 2012

Un documental introductorio:

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