By John Taylor
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Additional resources for Capital Cities: International Perspectives
38 Cf. (1988). Le città Capitali degli stati pre-unitarif atti del LUI Congresso di storia del risorgimento italiano. 39 Gut, Philippe. « Les Capitales de l'Italie pré-unitaire vues par les voyageurs français, » m Le Città capitali... p. 437-466. 40 Ibid. 41 Ibid. Ibid. 42 43 44 Ibid. Ibid. 45 Ibid. 46 Turco, Angelo (1988). Per una teoría délia complessità. Milano : Unicopoli. This page intentionally left blank ON THE NATURE OF CAPITALS AND THEIR PHYSICAL EXPRESSION Amos Rapoport I n this paper, I consider the nature of capitals and their physical expression, cross-culturally and historically, and derive implications for the present and future.
Although meaning is central for the understanding of all environments, it is even more so for capitals. Whatever the culture-specific meanings, capitals and their central enclaves exhibit the highest levels of meaning (Rapoport 1988b; 1990d, sp. 219-225). In terms of the distinction between the vernacular and the high-style, capitals, and especially their central enclaves, are the most controlled from above, the most explicit and theory-based, intended to be impressive and communicate power or to demonstrate cleverness, up-to-dateness (or, alternatively, traditionality) (Rapoport 1969 sp.
They organize and control larger territories, with more centralization and control, with more authority and more redistribution of resources. It is interesting that Brasilia was to organize and develop the interior of Brazil by being created there. Although partly an aspect of modernism, to try to use urban form and organization as an instrument of social change (Holston 1989), that effort also continues the traditional role of capitals as an essential component of the system of authority of the ruler and the organizing function.