Cicalò, Enrico (2008) Sugli spazi pubblici: discorsi sulla sfera pubblica della città contemporanea. Doctoral Thesis.
The purpose of this research is to single out new requisites for the public space project, that are suitable to promote acknowledgment of the public dimension of urban space and to reveal the unexpressed potential of the marginal spaces of contemporary city. New interpretations of urban dynamics might suggest fresh resources for the city project and stimulate a renewal of project-work which could give back to public space its political and relational dimension. The aim of this PhD Thesis is to explore the “publicness” of contemporary city. Several scholars argue that most discourses about urban public sphere are focused on the inner city and on the decline of public space, but few attention has been paid on the vitality of alternative and marginal spaces in the urban field. Starting from the recognition of the crucial concept of public and its different meanings, this research analyses the concept of decline of public space and the contemporary need to rethinking public space. This thesis suggests some ways of thinking contemporary public space, its perception and transformation processes. Relationship between public sphere and public space will be discussed by means of the main approaches provided by the scientific literature: the decline of the public sphere, the illusion of the public life, the renaissance of the public space and the utopia of the public space project. Analysing the main discourses on the urban public sphere it will be possible to identify weakness and strengths into the literature on this topic on which to focalize next research activities.
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