Our place in the world. Philosophy of Living in the Contemporary City

  • Torregroza Lara, Enver Joel (PI)

Project: Research Project

Project Details


The project of the work aims at a philosophical deepening of the problems of significant existential appropriation of our images, representations and experiences of the world, whether in the form of the universe and our relationship with the idea of nature, in the form of the cosmos and our relationship with the place of culture in the history of the universe, or in the more mundane form of the world, as a space of cosmopolitan habitat or as a space of experience of finitude and solitude in need of meaning.
In this sense, the project constitutes a fundamental contribution to the reflection on what it has been meaning - from the existential perspective of the fundamental values that guide our ways of being human - to live in a homeland, to inhabit a territory or a home, to build a community or a city, or to be a citizen of the world. With this project we hope to provide the basis to facilitate not only the significant consideration and problematization of the background of contemporary ideas of homeland, world, cosmos, territory or city, among others, but also to open the communicating vessels between different world views based on different cultural traditions.
In short, it is a philosophical contribution to the trans-disciplinary discussion about the background images of our spatial condition that allow us to create the spaces of meaning and orientation in which our daily modes of action, the construction of social realities and contemporary political actions navigate.
The first stage of the project seeks to delve into our experiences, representations and symbolic constructions of city spaces, based on contemporary literature, philosophy and art that have thought about the city of the world today, taking into account the conditions of historical possibility of each city experience, and developing a phenomenology and hermeneutics of city spaces.
The project has the clear intention of thinking about a problem of our time, to which both philosophy and the social and human sciences have been oriented in recent decades: the role of space, territory and place in human life.

Traditionally, in the political field, this has been approached from a geopolitical or geographical perspective, investigating how the disposition of territory determines the emergence and manifestation of political power.
It is also a concern that goes to the very heart of International Relations, insofar as the latter is, for example, a theory of the political world, which offers us images of the space in which we live as an ordered international space, with hierarchies and coordinates, which end up affecting our lives and orienting our thinking and our political behavior.
In the political field, the traditional problem of place has also had to do, for example, with the notions of territory and homeland, which affect the idea of nationality and sovereignty, which are in question today and which deserve to be thought about in a political environment that aspires to a global consciousness and an idea of global citizenship.
The project focuses in its first part on the purpose of thinking about the experience of urban space that the inhabitants of contemporary cities have. This for several reasons. The first is because the emphasis on the urban experience aims to orient research towards the themes of the Urban Management and Development program of the School of Political Science and related lines of research, which need to be deepened, expanded and strengthened. The second, because the description of the phenomenon of life in contemporary cities, made from the methodological perspective proposed in the project, allows us to understand them as political spaces that guide our lives. The third, because the very concept of city is enriched by understanding it as the product of the significant experience its inhabitants have of it, helping us to understand that the territory is never something independent of the way its inhabitants inhabit it.
The project has an additional scope, by trying to think, from the political philosophy, the importance of our images of the space in which we live as symbols of our existential concerns, recovering the old classic idea that political philosophy is nothing but the philosophy of the polis, that is, the city. And understanding that the city itself is a symbol of our projects of collective happiness, which is what has been the task of politics for centuries.

Commitments / Obligations

Ponencia en evento científico internacional
Effective start/end date1/1/166/30/16

UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This project contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being

Main Funding Source

  • Installed Capacity (Academic Unit)


  • Bogotá D.C.


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