Accepted paper:

Sociality in open urban spaces: imagining the future of the corso in southeastern Europe

Authors:

Vesna Vucinic-Neskovic (University of Belgrade)

Paper short abstract:

Leisurely promenade in the main town street (the corso), is an informal social institution observed throughout the 20th century cities of Serbia and Montenegro. Analyzing the major factors influencing this practice of communal sociality, the paper will deal with the future of the corso in the 21st century.

Paper long abstract:

Leisurely promenade in the main town street, known as the corso (korzo), is an informal social institution observed throughout most of the 20th century cities of Serbia and Montenegro. Its classic form comprises the perpetual circular movement of small gender-mixed groups of town residents along the established walking routes, and simultaneous positioning of male groups that stand alongside the same route. The main purpose of the corso is social engagement through public self-presentation and exchange of information on novelties in the local community life. The town residents' spatial behavior creates segmentation of the corso space according to their simultaneous belonging to various social groups that differ by age, gender, class, ethnicity and religion. Based on the fieldwork study of changes in the corso from the 1930s to the early 2000s in a number of cities of Serbia and Montenegro, changes in the temporal, spatial and social characteristics of the corso will be examined. Accentuating the major factors that determine these changes (such as urban sprawl, reconstruction of the old urban cores, commercialization of leisure time activities, socializing via internet, and ethnic or religious tensions), the paper will deal with the future of the corso in the 21st century.

panel P112
Urban futures (WCAA/IUAES/JASCA joint panel) CLOSED - 10