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photo source: courtesy of Cătălin Ștefănescu
Does the Ideal City imply an Ideal Society?

Cătălin Ștefănescu


“Ideal”, regardless of the context it is used in, can easily be seen as a sublime fiction. Ideal bodies, ideal houses, ideal love and lovers, ideal holidays, ideal beauty, ideal family, ideal parents, ideal children, ideal cities, ideal society. Different facets of the human aspirations and nostalgia for any kind of perfection. A mixture of moral thinking, ethics and esthetics, continuously attempting to overcome the fascinating imperfection of the human being. And a frontier that keeps on moving forward since the beginning of our greatest illusion: understanding. As long as we understand an ideal portrait of anything as a collection of different types of perfection, “ideal” becomes a form of torture and self-torture. But as long as “ideal” is a frontier, an aspiration, an assumption of its sublimely fictional nature, it becomes the most generous and noble definition of “human”. Cities are not only structures, models and algorithms. They are first and foremost human gatherings, extremely complex results of our experience of being together. Sophisticated outcomes of our profound need to be together. Ideal cities and ideal societies are two of the many facets belonging to the ideal human being. The more impossible they are, the more fascination grows towards this type of frontier. And as long as it stays like that, we’re within the limitless limits of the human being. When they move towards a fixed definition, fascination ceases to exist. A new dimension of “human” comes on stage. It’s not about the raise of the machines, and conspiracy theories. But about the sadness of getting tired. And old. Wisdom is often a good treatment. But keeping the fascination alive can really cure.         

Cătălin Ştefănescu (born December 29, 1968, Râmnicu Vâlcea) is a Romanian television presenter known for Garantat 100% show, which he produces. He graduated from the Faculty of Letters of the Babeş-Bolyai University in Cluj-Napoca in 1995, and his bachelor's degree was about the ancient theater in Greece.

It is known that he spent his childhood at Govora.

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