The ”Urban Personality” of the Contemporary Romanian Society. Case Study: Bucharest


Andreea Acasandre


The study of the city from a sociological perspective was developed at the beginning of the 20th century, in Germany and the USA. Louis Wirth was one of the members of the Chicago School, together with Burgess, Park, Drake and Clayton. Wirth (1938) relates, from a theoretical point of view, the physical space of the city to the way of life of its inhabitants. Through his work, he develops the theory of the “urban personality”, which presents the modern urban way of life as being fundamentally different from the rural one. The differences mentioned by him were related to the number of inhabitants of the city, the social heterogeneity and density of the population. These are the three components that distinguish the “urban way of life”. Starting from this theory of the “urban personality”, through this article, we seek to define the urban personality of Bucharest, the Capital of Romania, in the context of the contemporary mega-trends: globalization, increased mobility, environmental issues and the technological developments. Our research started from the urban personality, defined during the 1930s, by both Louis Wirth (Chicago School of Sociology) and Cincinat Sfinţescu (Romania). In the intent of bringing this concept into the contemporary post-modern society, we seek to understand its interwar significance and to update it by overlapping the layers that belong to the post-modern society, globalization, mobility, technology development and environmental issues, which made the concept of urban personality a more fluid one in comparison with the significance it had at the beginning of the 20th century. The article treats the “urban personality” throughout the 20th and 21st century, by applying it to the specific case of Bucharest, a city that suffered many transformations, sociologically and architecturally.


Author Biography

Andreea Acasandre, Faculty of Urbanism, Department of Urban and Landscape Design, „Ion Mincu” University of Architecture and Urbanism

Adress: 18-20 Academiei Street, Bucharest, Romania.


How to Cite
Acasandre, A. (2015). The ”Urban Personality” of the Contemporary Romanian Society. Case Study: Bucharest. Sociologie Românească, 13(3-4), 55-71. Retrieved from