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Palermo. An incomplete post-metropolitan area


Palermo is the most populated and important city of Sicily, and the fifth most populated city in Italy. Although it is widely known for its marginality. One of the traditional cli- chés connected to Palermo and Sicily is that its people have developed a passive attitude as a consequence of the many foreign dominations of the island. Most scholars point out that the city of Palermo has never been a metropolis and therefore there is no way it could be considered a post-metropolis, having almost entirely skipped the metropolitan phase. Today, the Regione Sicilia is work- ing on a reform that should lead to the città metropolitana (metropolitan city) of Palermo. We have chosen to consider the metropolitan area in order to take into account the relationships linking Palermo to its hinterland, but we have to stress that this condition is quite different from other cases in Italy, as western Sicily is largely surrounded by sea and has only minor rela- tionships with the rest of Italy.