Taken as a whole, this week’s readings seem to emphasize multiplicity in possible interpretations of the city at a more personal level. Poe takes what might be the most personal interpretation by actively focusing on and following an old man as he wanders the city after dark. Benjamin, on the other hand, remains detached from any one person he physically encounters as he wanders through different cities, meditating instead on literature by Baudelaire.

What I find most interesting is the way individuals are able to edit their sensory perceptions of the city. We automatically filter out unimportant information in order to avoid being overwhelmed by our own senses. Amin and Thrift propose three metaphors as filters to capture and organize everyday activities. I wonder if these filters can be universal or if they must be unique to the individual. The readings seem to portray the act of wandering as a mechanism for seeing through our self-imposed filters. But is there a line where wandering in and of itself becomes such an engrossing activity — like it is for Poe —that it becomes its own filter?