Ex Uno Plures

A Walk through Marxist Urban Studies
  • Paolo Ceccarelli
Part of the Environment, Development, and Public Policy book series (EDPC)


Marxist studies of urban problems often remind me of a children’s game I used to play with friends in the summer. We lay on the beach looking at the big, lazy clouds in the sky. We had to give them names, according to the images they evoked in each one of us. “It is a lion’s head.” “Nooo... they are two interlaced giants.” “Come on. It is a beautiful woman—the sleeping beauty.” All of us saw different things and argued very strongly in favor of the image we thought was the right one. We usually were bitterly divided over interpretations, and skillfully dialectic in defending them. At the same time, and this is what I remember best, our imagery developed according to a common paradigm. Images were taken mostly from the animal world, either human beings or beasts. We stuck to these very rigidly. While we were bitterly divided over interpretations, and very smart in pointing out how wrong others were, all of us were very loyal to our common standard. A cloud never was a big walnut tree, a medieval castle, or a Spanish galleon.


Capitalist Society Sleeping Beauty Socialist Society Social Democratic Party Urban Problem 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • Paolo Ceccarelli
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Social and Economic Analysis of the TerritoryIstituto Universitario di ArchitetturaVeniceItaly

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