Neuromancer and the Unreal City

“[…] Oscillating between these two polar representations of urban space, the idea of the city as an urban utopia that gained prominence in the visual science fiction of the 20s (the film Metropolis presents a gleaming city inspired by New York City that does have its utopian side) gave way in the 50s, amidst the increasing alienation of American culture and the postwar white flight from urban centers, to “science fiction cities that were claustrophobic and isolating, outsized monadic structures sealed off from their surroundings” (Bukatman 43). It is this dark, suffocating vision of the city, seen from the street level and often at night, that Neuromancer takes its cues from and builds upon. What results are the disturbingly prophetic night cities that sprawl unbounded through the pages and into our imaginations.”

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