The City through the Eyes of a Sociologist. A lecture by Alexander Bikbov

Lecture Cycle. Alexander Bikbov: The City from the Inside
15 June 2017


In the first lecture of the cycle, Alexander Bikbov introduces his research project that explores the ways we reclaim urban spaces and speaks about the sources of alienation in the city.

Moscow sets in opposition the city of cars and the city of pedestrians, the profitable and the comfortable, twinkling danger and the ecstasy of consuming.

But is the real life of the city’s blocks, social groups and neighbourhoods determined exclusively by those variables?

We discover close connections between what is archaic and cutting edge, and see how a common space is formed by a common threat and not by mutual attraction. We see locations become events in biographies. Exploring what is hardly noticeable or extreme, that facts that make us call places ranging from small parks and rundown libraries to blocks of flats and shopping malls ‘our own’, we get a new perspective on the city and its actors.


Alexander Bikbov is a sociologist, editor of the interdisciplinary journal Logos, and associate member of Centre Maurice Halbwachs, Paris; author of The Grammar of Order: Historical Sociology of Concepts That Transform Our Reality (2014); and many academic and popular articles on contemporary Russian society, reforms of education and academia, social movements, socioprofessional hierarchies, and the sociology of knowledge.

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