Ordinary cities, extraordinary geographies: parallax dimensions, interpolations and the scale question

John R. Bryson, Ron Kalafsky, Vida Vanchan

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review

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This chapter introduces the concept of ordinary cities and extraordinary geographies. The chapter initially explores the neglect of smaller towns and cities in urban theory including a discussion of confirmation bias and the dangers of seeing what is expected rather than that which is actual. The analysis then critiques multi-scalar approaches to the urban question by highlighting that scale is relative and experiential. The analysis then identifies some elements of an alternative approach to urban theory informed by the works of Georges Perec, James Joyce and Slavoj Žižek. This alternative approach highlights the importance of understanding the infra-ordinary and extra-ordinary combined with interpolations and parallax shifts. The emphasis is on developing a more inclusive approach to understanding variegated urbanism and the development of a parallax informed approach to urban theory.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationOrdinary Cities, Extraordinary Geographies
Subtitle of host publicationPeople, Place and Space
EditorsBryson John, Ronald Kalafsky, Vida Vanchan
Place of PublicationCheltenham
PublisherEdward Elgar
Number of pages22
ISBN (Electronic)9781789908022
ISBN (Print)9781789908015
Publication statusPublished - 20 Aug 2021

Publication series

NameCities series


  • ordinary cities
  • extraordinary geographies
  • parallax dimensions
  • interpolations
  • scale

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences(all)


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