Emotive Terrains: Exploring the emotional geographies of city through walking as art, senses and embodied technologies

Psarras, Vasileios. 2015. Emotive Terrains: Exploring the emotional geographies of city through walking as art, senses and embodied technologies. Doctoral thesis, Goldsmiths, University of London [Thesis]

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Abstract or Description

Walking has always been the nexus between humans and the city, constituting an expression with artistic, cultural, performative and sensorial implications for an array of artistic and intellectual voices. This thesis investigates the personal and shared emotional geographies of the city (e.g. streets, tube stations) through performative and aesthetic considerations of walking, senses, metaphors and embodied technologies. Three areas primarily inform this thesis and shape its chapters: i) contemporary urban walking theories and artistic spatial practices (e.g. flaneur, psychogeography), ii) sensory/technological aspects of walking and of contemporary city and iii) the investigation of emotional geographies. The research has opened up new dialogues within the 21st century city by highlighting the sensory and social importance of walking as art and the flaneur in the production and exploration of emotional geographies. Consequently, it proposes a hybrid walking as art method, which is pursued through a trialectic of actions, senses and selected metaphors (e.g. “botanizing”, “weaving”, “tuning”, “orchestrating”) amplified by technologies. The core inventive method and methodology is personal or shared walking, shaped by the qualitative sub-methods of talking whilst walking, embodied audiovisual/GPS tools, metaphors and online blogging. These methods contribute to a live reflection and documentation of sensory and emotional attentiveness. Outputs of this research include a series of fully documented walking artworks in London and Athens, presented through audiovisual means and maps. This thesis argues that the trialectic of actions, senses and metaphors through technologies extends our understanding of walking and flaneur as a hybrid method of production and analysis. Consequently, it re-contextualises the concept of flaneur in the 21st century city by proposing the one of the hybrid flaneur/flaneuse through a merging of artistic, sensorial, sociological and geographical standpoints. Therefore, the thesis offers new and distinctive insights into the practices and theories of walking, regarding interdisciplinary explorations of emotional geographies of the city.

Item Type:

Thesis (Doctoral)

Identification Number (DOI):



Flaneur, walking as art, emotional geographies, senses, psychogeography, metaphors, embodied technologies, city, hybrid flaneur, non-places, locative media

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Computing > Goldsmiths Digital Studios


31 March 2015

Item ID:


Date Deposited:

15 Apr 2015 13:32

Last Modified:

29 Apr 2020 16:10



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