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Barthes, Roland. “Semiology and the Urban.” Rethinking Architecture: A Reader in Cultural Theory. Neil Leach. London: Routledge, 1997.
Barthes attempts in this article to apply semiology to urban landscapes and find the possibility of “urban semiology.” He introduces urban semiology to remind us of historical relativism in the conception of signifying space. Barthes argues that we need “to understand the play of signs, understand that any city is a structure, but that we must never try and we must never want to fill in this structure.” He discusses Tokyo, Japan, an exceptional example of urban semiology. [R. Harada]