Social Imaginaries of Space
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Social Imaginaries of Space

Concepts and Cases

Bernard Debarbieux

Travelling through various historical and geographical contexts, Social Imaginaries of Space explores diverse forms of spatiality, examining the interconnections which shape different social collectives. Proposing a theory on how space is intrinsically linked to the making of societies, this book examines the history of the spatiality of modern states and nations and the social collectives of Western modernity in a contemporary light.
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Chapter 10: Case 5: post-national imaginary of New York Italianness

Bernard Debarbieux


The Marco Polo Festival second edition took place on 12 October 2010 in Chinatown and Little Italy in downtown Manhattan, New York. A stage had been set up at the crossroads of Mott and Grand Streets, so I was able to observe Chinese opera singers, a band playing Italian songs, local clubs representatives, a rather dramatic interpretation of the United States national anthem by an Australian singer, a dance of the dragon and many other things too. The event was a concentrate of more or less stereotypical emblems and symbols, referring to China and to Italy first, but also to the United States, to Italian-Americans and Chinese-Americans, all enveloped in this friendly atmosphere that typifies the many ongoing city street manifestations.

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