Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Flâneur

From Wikipedia

There is no English equivalent for the French word flâneur. Cassell's dictionary defines flâneur as a stroller, saunterer, drifter but none of these terms seems quite accurate. There is no English equivalent for the term, just as there is no Anglo-Saxon counterpart of that essentially Gallic individual, the deliberately aimless pedestrian, unencumbered by any obligation or sense of urgency, who, being French and therefore frugal, wastes nothing, including his time which he spends with the leisurely discrimination of a gourmet, savoring the multiple flavors of his city. (Cornelia Otis Skinner Elegant Wits and Grand Horizontals, 1962, Houghton Mifflin, New York)

3 comments:

audrey said...

hey! it's been awhile. this feels analogous to running into you on the street earlier today!

audrey said...

and here's the quintessential "flaneur" painting:
http://www.impressionism.org/teachimpress/browse/lesson3.htm

Julia said...

Dude I'm totally a flaneurette.