Saturday, September 16, 2006

Hidden Boundaries

In Calvino's "Invisible Cities" the reader is drawn into a world of cities that goes beyond the imagination. What is unique about the writing is that no matter how descriptive or impossible the ideas may be, the cities we read about could actually exist. They are completely enveloped in reality because what defines Calvino's cities is the people who line in them and the manner in which they interact amongst one another. Is human interaction what defines a city or is it something else? Is it the architecture? The question I ask, is what is most important?

In Baltimore what I find interesting is the boundaries, because whether we like it or not they exist. For example, I could walk for five blocks and be surrounded by "mansions", and then unexpectedly, I could be in a place completely opposite, just by walking into the next city block. My curiosity lies in the relationship between the boundary neighbors. Are they friends? Do they know each other’s name? Have they ever acknowledged one another? What affect do these invisible, but very real lines do to cities? Does it matter?

The citizens in Calvino's cities do not always speak to one another but, they still communicate and in some ways they are connected. Whether by the history of the city or by a dream they are unified. How are we (the citizens of Baltimore) connected? Why does it matter? In "Invisible Cities" all the characters share desires, fear, and memories. The same I am sure can be said of Baltimore because the same can be said of all cities, because all cities are made up and defined by the people living in it, and all people have dreams, desires, fears, and memories.