CONF Oct 10, 2019

Global histories of walking (London, 15-16 Nov 19)

Courtauld Institute of Art, Vernon Square, Penton Rise, London WC1X 9EW, Nov 15–16, 2019

Richard Wrigley

Ideas about the origins and context for the flâneur have been tied to Paris, and viewed through the lens of Walter Benjamin’s Arcades Project. While Benjaminian orthodoxy has increasingly been challenged, the association of the flâneur with modernity and European cities has continued to dominate studies of its variant forms. This conference aims to de-centre the concept and expand such critique by identifying and analysing forms of pedestrian observation in the early modern period taking note of the fact that strolling, seeing and being seen – and ‘walking the city’ – emerged well before Europe and the 19th century in urban experiences in cities like Istanbul, Isfahan, Delhi and Beijing.


FRIDAY, November 15, 2019

16:30 – 17:00

Opening remarks: Sussan Babaie and Richard Wrigley

17:30 – 18:30
Keynote Address:
Professor Çiğdem Kafescioğlu (Boğaziçi University, Istanbul)
Modalities of urban experience and a lexicon of vision:
Walking-viewing early modern Istanbul

18:30 – 19:30
Drinks reception

SATURDAY, November 16, 2019, 9:30 – 17:00

9:00-9:30 am: Registration

Aslıhan Aksoy-Sheridan (TED University, Ankara)
An Ottoman Armenian flâneur in early modern Istanbul:
Eremia Chelebi Komurjian capturing the seventeenth-century Ottoman capital

David Karmon (Holy Cross, Worcester, Massachusetts)
Pavements and pedestrian movement in two Renaissance cities (Venice and Rome)

Saundra Weddle (Drury University, Springfield, Missouri)
Visualizing and mobilizing sex work on Venice’s canals

Peyvand Firouzeh (University of Sydney)
Walking Yazd: Historicism, urban planning, and imperial connectivity

Nuno Grancho (Instituto Universitário de Lisboa, ISCTE-IUL)
Spatial mobility in the early modern colonial city of Diu

Marika Takanishi Knowles (University of St Andrews)
A guide to walking in Yoshiwara (1678): Hishikawa Moronobu’s flâneur

Marie Yasunaga (University of Amsterdam)
Exploring early modern urban space of Edo through the Edo Meisho Zue

Concluding remarks: Stephen Whiteman (Courtauld Institute of Art)

CONF: Global histories of walking (London, 15-16 Nov 19). In:, Oct 10, 2019 (accessed Jan 26, 2021), <>.