Darian-Smith, Eve. (1995) "Country and City in the New Europe". In: UNSPECIFIED, Charleston, South Carolina. (Unpublished)
The country (periphery) and city (center) define a mutually constituting relationship. Drawing on Raymond Williams' country/city dichotomy, and postcolonial critiques of this state framed relationship, this paper takes a slightly different direction in exploring the continuing viability of the capital city as emblematic of national interests and an authoritative controlling center. In discussing recent research about "global" cities in Europe, I bring into question London's shirting spatial associations both to other European cities and to its surrounding landscape. My Focus centers on the proposed high-speed rail link between London, Paris, Brussels, Cologne and Amsterdam, of which the Channel Tunnel is a part. I ask how these transport networks, which seek to transform national cities into European citystations, may alter people's construction of a nationally identifiable countryside. This exploration of the new tensions emerging between ideas of city and country within a national context is one way of approaching a much larger territorial issue facing a transnational Europe. In the so-called march towards European unity, where will lie future centers and peripheries?
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