Contemporary urban life is the epitome of modernization, a paradigm of progress that takes the Holocene climate for granted. It takes for granted the Biosphere conditions that have allowed human civilizations to flourish. However, anthropogenic environmental impacts are on course to disrupt our way of life in deeper ways and at a wider scale than anything previously experienced by mankind at a global level. Global existential risks challenge the viability of the Biosphere for most big species. Despite increasing warnings, most cities seem to be in denial of the impending catastrophes and remain ill-prepared to cope with major disruptions. A review of the most relevant existing literature leads to a call to overcome existing paradigms of urban development and let the Holocene city go. The case is made for rethinking the urban Anthropocene in the light of the challenges likely to be faced by cities around the world over the coming years.
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