Flâneuse Fragments: Towards a critical & situated feminist approach to walking in the city

Jackson, Emma. 2021. Flâneuse Fragments: Towards a critical & situated feminist approach to walking in the city. In: Anita Strasser and Carla Duarte, eds. Walking Places - Conference Proceedings. Lisbon: DINÂMIA’CET-IUL, pp. 32-39. ISBN 9789897813092 [Book Section]

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Abstract or Description

This paper sets out an alternative agenda for thinking and writing about walking in the city from a situated and feminist perspective. Taking a different departure point from traditions of writing about walking in the city that celebrate the figure of the flâneur, this intervention proposes a mode of flâneuserie that can be used as a critical feminist practice to interpret and disrupt urban space. The paper draws on a set of flâneuse fragments – ideas borrowed from a range of women activists, academics and artists – who use walking in their research and practice. The paper firstly outlines feminist discussions about the possibility of the flâneuse, drawing on other readings of the early modern city. I then lay out a series of propositions for a situated and critical flâneuserie using examples of feminist approaches ranging from the UK-based sociologist Nirmal Puwar to the Blank Noise collective in India. The paper proposes a mode of flâneuserie that a) is attuned to how different forms of power unfold in and through public space b) uses attunement to power as the basis for interventions that challenge the status quo c) uses walking to read the past, present and futures of spaces, against the grain d) recognises that experiences of walking are situated and embodied rather than universal e) is multiple and based on a collective effort f) provides insights into the urban without claiming to be complete or universal.

Item Type:

Book Section

Additional Information:

The paper was presented at the Walking Places Symposium held at Centro de Informaçao Urbana de Lisboa (the Centre for Urban Information of Lisbon) in January 2019.

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Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Sociology > Centre for Urban and Community Research (CUCR)


1 March 2021Published

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Date Deposited:

19 Mar 2021 16:27

Last Modified:

16 Jul 2021 09:30



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