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ISSN 0869-5377
The Logos Journal

Capital city


About author:
French urbanist, classic of geography science, who had been the Director of the School of Geography at Oxford University.

The article discusses the concept of a capital city and the formation of capital cities, mostly in European countries. Gottmann emphasizes three factors that define the role of a capital city: the size of its territory, external features of a state, character of its international connections and a level of government control. The author also discusses the volume of capital cities’ functions, motivations and consistent patterns of capital city relocations in different countries, the peculiar features of new capital cities as well as factors that determine their geographical location, type of architecture and iconography. Gottmann develops the concept of capital cities as hinges to link various ethnic and other groups within the state, different periods of national history and to connect the country with the world outside. The author also turns to an issue of the character of conflicts between major cities and the state power in different historical periods and discusses the role of former capitals within the inner dynamics of cultures and states.

Keywords: former capitals, capital relocation, capital functions, peripheral and central capitals, multiple hinge, urbanization, metropolisation, megapolices, projectes cities

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