The Role of a Good City Thinking: Utopia, Dystopia and Heterotopia

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Good city thinking
The following essay addresses the discourse around the good city, trying to understand the importance of having a thinking on the topic rather than providing solutions for a good city.
Providing solutions for the good city pose questions such as: good for whom? what is good? etc. These questions prompt that good and city are two words that form more questions than answers. In these nebula of questions urban design plays an important role because its nature is in the urban and therefore in the city. As Madanipour points out, urban design occupies a potentially strategic place in shaping the city of the future (Madanipour, 2006).
Madanipour uses two words that are fundamental in this conversation: city and future. It
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Therefore, "in order to bring about a world that is fit to live in, we need new and solid ideas for living, persuasive images of the good society” (Friedmann, 2000, p.461)
This persuasive image is defined as utopia and "today more than ever, there is no theory without utopia. Otherwise, a person is content to record what he sees before his eyes” Lefebvre wrote (Pinder, 2013, p.1).
Someone could argue that a utopia is just one vision of the good city but since every citizen has its own image of the good city, it is not possible with one utopia define what is the good city. This statement is correct but misunderstands the role of utopia. “Utopian thinking, at least as far as planners are concerned, is historically grounded in specific emancipatory struggles” (Friedmann, 2000, p.464). Therefore, the role of utopia is very important in helping citizens to achieve a future that will be better than the present situation. Helping to achieve is the key concept for utopia. Utopia does not provide solutions but suggestions for the future. Therefore looking for a ‘common good’ is important and “without such a conception, there can be neither a sense of local identity nor a political community” (Friedmann, 2000, p.465).
So utopia and the idea of 'common good' are important not only to create an helpful vision of the city but also as a process of community thinking that is able to create

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