‘City of Light’: The Production of Urban Space by the Esoteric Spiritual Community of Damanhur, Italy

  • Stefania PalmisanoEmail author
  • Alberto Vanolo


This chapter presents an analysis of the esoteric spiritual community of Damanhur where, since 1975, an alternative urban reality has been recreated from scratch in an Alpine valley close to Turin. The community is analysed as a peculiar case of a micro-urban setting and as a case study for ‘alternative’ global urbanism. On the one hand, the production of space is largely driven by non-economic forces. On the other hand, the community appears to actively project an image, and to be represented in mainstream media, as a ‘diverse’, ‘weird’ and ultimately ‘alternative’ space. The multiple spatialities of the community unfold beyond the physical boundaries of the village, being imbricated in wider social, spiritual and economic networks at multiple geographical scales.


Damanhur Spiritual communities Alternative spaces Religious spaces Spiritual geographies 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Contemporary Religion and Faiths in Transition (CRAFT)University of TurinTurinItaly
  2. 2.University of TurinTurinItaly

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