“The destiny of every walking man is to immerse himself in the panorama surrounding him, to the point of becoming one with it and, ultimately, to vanish.”
Can urban wandering become a selfish art form or a secret vice? Absolutely yes, according to Federico Castigliano who in his book “Flâneur: The Art of Wandering the Streets of Paris” tells us his adventures, offering a romantic vision of the “City of Lights”. Paris is the ideal city to walk without haste, “the realm of the possible” for those who are truly consumed by wanderlust. Nevertheless, if the art of urban wandering was born in Paris, it can be practiced in other cities as well.
This lecture aims to show the public how to become a perfect urban rambler, or flâneur, following ten basic rules. The challenge that Federico Castigliano has to face seems rather demanding: to teach the busy inhabitants of the Chinese metropolisa new lifestyle based on the pleasure of discovery and on the free, aimless wandering.
This lifestyle, similar to one of the dandies who wanted to "make their life as a work of art", is embodied by an emblematic figure of modern Europe, born among the boulevards of Paris: the flâneur. The word "flâneur" derives from the French verb “flâner” which means "to wander aimlessly through the city, enjoying the beauty of the outside world."
The result of years of studies, walks and adventures, “Flâneur” is an experimental book, which illustrates the secrets of the flânerie, the noble art of wandering without a destination for the city. Half essay, half autobiographical narration – already known in the Italian, French and English versions – it has now arrived in China, published by the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.
Federico Castigliano holds a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature (University of Turin) and is Associate Professor of Italian Studies. Having worked for several years in France, he currently teaches at Beijing International Studies University. His writing combines nonfiction and fiction and centers on the relationship between the individual and urban spaces, thus exploring the possibilities of today's city.
There'll be books signing at the end of talk. We prepare both english & Chinese version. Looking forward to you.
Friday, March 1 at 7:30pm
60RMB(including a drink)