Course unit title Metaphysics of Urban Space
Name and e-mail of the lecturer

Smilen Markov

Course code 20134360
Course content

The course is addressed to students of different academic disciplines who would like to work in the interdisciplinary field of urban studies or are planning to specialize in city planning. One of the characteristic features of urban space is its ability to ‘remember’: not only to preserve places and artifacts, but to save structures of urban life and of localization. Through the methods of philosophical phenomenology the course examines the mechanisms through which urban space transmits memory. One of the criteria for comparing different patterns of urban structure is the proportion of private and public space and the relations between the two. The goal of this course is to study and test different epistemic models for describing the complex interconnection between man and city. Special emphasis is put on the structure of the city in Late Antiquity and its modification under the influence of Christian culture, due to which the Byzantine and the Western Medieval city occurred. At stake is also the continuity of urban space in the modern city. The course examines the models of organization of space in the Ancient and Mediaeval City. Students are acquainted with the transformation of elements and mechanisms for stratification of urban space. Different regimes for preserving or clearing the historicity of space in cities are explored. The text material used in the discussions will be in English or German and will be selected according to the profile of the different groups of students. At the end of the course the participants will be able to categorize a map of different types of elements and systematic connections with which to construct a possible metaphysics of urban space.

Learning activities and teaching methods Lectures, discussions, individual and group assignments
Contact hours 15
Assessment method 30% - presence and participation; 70% a presentation on a relevant topic