Book

Taking Place: Non-Representational Theories and Geography

Authors:

Abstract

Emerging over the past ten years from a set of post-structuralist theoretical lineages, non-representational theories are having a major impact within Human Geography. Non-representational theorisation and research has opened up new sets of problematics around the body, practice and performativity and inspired new ways of doing and writing human geography that aim to engage with the taking-place of everyday life. Drawing together a range of innovative contributions from leading writers, this is the first book to provide an extensive and in-depth overview of non-representational theories and human geography. The work addresses the core themes of this still developing field, demonstrates the implications of non-representational theories for many aspects of human geographic thought and practice, and highlights areas of emergent critical debate. The collection is structured around four thematic sections Life, Representation, Ethics and Politics - which explore the varied relations between non-representational theories and contemporary human geography.
... Caerleon is a suitable site as statistics from Newport City Council (2017) convey that a fifth of citizens are aged 65 and above. On a theoretical level, this study uses walking interviews to explore how spaces act as thresholds to memories and levels of unconscious which may not otherwise reveal themselvesconnecting to phenomena considered to be 'nonrepresentational' in the work of Thrift (2008) or Anderson and Harrison (2010). This thesis uses relevant literature from gerontology, human geography and environmental psychology to develop a methodological framework which focuses on space more than time, particularly by using walking interviews. ...
... wherein we find a concept that is intellectually complex, particularly as many consider affect to be 'non-representational' (Thrift, 2008) due to being held deeper within the unconscious body and therefore not easy to sense. The potential for affect and non-representation is explored by geographical thinkers such as Anderson and Harrison (2010). ...
... Solnit argues that if we lose our self (conscious mind or cognition) we can connect through space to harness the psychic state (affect and the unconscious.) These are certainly big and complicated ideas, but their promise has excited the human geographers who feature in Taking-place: Non-representational Theories and Geography (Anderson & Harrison, 2010). The third section of this literature review explores the power of psychogeographical drift to get lost and therefore help the body to enter such spaces. ...
Thesis
Full-text available
Pursuing the Post War Dream offers methods to uncover the ‘rhizome’ (Thrift, 2000) which lies below the surface: offering ways to understand the role of the past in the present day. This inquiry arises from gerontology and develops a methodology which explores how the everyday – such as stories about houses, streets and neighbourhoods – allows people from different generations to build empathy in research relationships. The work uses Caerleon, south Wales, as a case study to consider what economic, technological and social changes through the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s mean for contemporary ageing populations. Caerleon is a suitable site as statistics from Newport City Council (2017) convey that a fifth of citizens are aged 65 and above. On a theoretical level, this study uses walking interviews to explore how spaces act as thresholds to memories and levels of unconscious which may not otherwise reveal themselves – connecting to phenomena considered to be ‘non-representational’ in the work of Thrift (2008) or Anderson and Harrison (2010). This thesis uses relevant literature from gerontology, human geography and environmental psychology to develop a methodological framework which focuses on space more than time, particularly by using walking interviews. We also bridge between the disciplines of social science, literature and performance by following Solnit (2017, p. 5) where she advises that artists can ‘...open the doors and invite in prophesies, the unknown, the unfamiliar.’ The case study therefore involves a practical collaboration with a performance artist to make public site-specific performances based on the interview materials. The findings are presented as a guided walk where interview materials, public walking tours, responses to performance, and other contemporary materials are mapped on a specific geography. The main philosophical contribution of this study is a methodology which better understands space as unconscious maps or indexes to more deeply-held memories and affects.
... It is commonly understood that the city is made up of a network of different yet interconnected bodies. Urban bodies are related and form social, economic, cultural, and legislative assemblages across their differences (see Amin & Thrift 2002;Anderson & Harrison 2010;Pløger 2016;Førde 2019). From this perspective this article seeks to understand what a city can do as an interface relating and distributing a diversity of bodies. ...
... In urban politics and planning that increasingly operate through affective modes of regulation and stratification, the concepts of affect and event could more broadly be seen as governmentality. As noted by cultural geographers Ben Anderson and Paul Harrison, planning and urban politics can be seen as apparatuses that monitor affective processes (Anderson & Harrison 2010;McCormack 2018). While spatial politics and planning do not have universal capacities to control affective relations, they do, however, influence how affective encounters take place. ...
Chapter
This book engages with how affective encounters are shaped and conditioned by interfacial events. Together, the chapters explore the implications of this on a micro-perceptual and macro-relational level through an experimental middling of approaches and examples. While broadly departing from a Spinozist and Deleuzian theoretical foundation, the book weaves together a compelling number of conceptual and empirical trajectories. Always attuned to the implications, modulations and tonalities arising in the readings through art, journalism, bodies, an/archives, data and design, Affects, Interfaces, Events allows for a truly transdisciplinary resonance driven by theory, technology and practice.
... Anderson 2014). Calls to decenter the human subject dominate much of today's disciplinary agenda and draw their strength from renewed attention to objects, nonhumans, and all kinds of other morethan-human actors (for an overview, see also B. Anderson and Harrison 2010;K. Anderson 2014;Ash and Simpson 2016;Simpson 2017;Kinkaid 2021). ...
Article
Since the more-than-human turn, geographers have increasingly called for a decentering of the human subject by breaking away from a classically modern understanding of subjectivity and by treating humans as one of many players. In this article, we offer an alternative way of decentering the subject by following the psychoanalyst Jacques Lacan. Far from being subject-centered, psychoanalysis aims to understand the subject as a radically decentered and fragile production, which is only secured through what Lacan calls the imaginary. The imaginary combines two realms—image and imagination—and focuses on how the subject generates a sense of the self through spatial identification with images. Based on image-based interviews conducted in Singapore, Vancouver, and Berlin following the method of photo-elicitation, we demonstrate how this imaginary subject can be empirically investigated. We identify five stages in the interviews that help us retrace how the subject establishes an imaginary relationship with an image as well as how it is confronted with the fragile constitution of this relationship. We conclude by emphasizing the potential of image-based interviews to investigate the decentering of subjects and explore ways in which geographers can further decenter the subject psychoanalytically.
... Over the past two decades, cultural geographers have drawn inspiration from the performative turn in the social sciences to explore how practices change through repetition. Drawing succour from process theories concerned with tracing fluctuating indeterminate bodily capacities to affect and be affected (Anderson & Harrison, 2010), geographers have enhanced our appreciation that it is through the repetition of bodily practices that such capacities change. Studying diverse practices involving repeated bodily movements, geographers have explored how repetition is key to the formation of practical competencies. ...
Article
This paper develops the concept of the non‐encounter for geography in the context of the changing experience of gig economy work during COVID‐19. Supplementing political economy insights with a cultural geographic sensitivity to embodiment, we explore the fluctuating bodily capacities of food delivery drivers during the first year of the COVID‐19 pandemic in Melbourne, Australia. We reflect on fieldwork with gig workers which drew our attention to how the practice of doorstep food delivery became ‘contact‐free’ during the pandemic. In dialogue with cultural geographical literatures on boredom and interruptions, our paper highlights the deleterious impacts of repetition without interruption on workers’ bodies. We argue that the felt absences of previously‐enjoyed light‐touch interactions with customers and other delivery drivers has created a strange kind of ‘non‐encounter’ for gig workers, intensifying feelings of boredom and a sense of detachment. We speculate on what this means for the future of gig work and for cultural geographers.
... Anderson 2014). Calls to decenter the human subject dominate much of today's disciplinary agenda and draw their strength from renewed attention to objects, nonhumans, and all kinds of other morethan-human actors (for an overview, see also B. Anderson and Harrison 2010;K. Anderson 2014;Ash and Simpson 2016;Simpson 2017;Kinkaid 2021). ...
Article
Full-text available
Since the more-than-human turn, geographers have increasingly called for a decentering of the human subject by breaking away from a classically modern understanding of subjectivity and by treating humans as one of many players. In this article, we offer an alternative way of decentering the subject by following the psychoanalyst Jacques Lacan. Far from being subject-centered, psychoanalysis aims to understand the subject as a radically decentered and fragile production, which is only secured through what Lacan calls the imaginary. The imaginary combines two realms—image and imagination—and focuses on how the subject generates a sense of the self through spatial identification with images. Based on image-based interviews conducted in Singapore, Vancouver, and Berlin following the method of photo-elicitation, we demonstrate how this imaginary subject can be empirically investigated. We identify five stages in the interviews that help us retrace how the subject establishes an imaginary relationship with an image as well as how it is confronted with the fragile constitution of this relationship. We conclude by emphasizing the potential of image-based interviews to investigate the decentering of subjects and explore ways in which geographers can further decenter the subject psychoanalytically. © 2022 The Author(s). Published with license by Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.
... Such work echoes much indigenous knowledge and scholarship in that it refutes the ontological priority of individual (id) entities (Barker and Pickerill 2020;Escobar 1996;Little Bear 2000). A wealth of scholarship has addressed the ways in which this refutation also raises questions about the role of representation (which presumes a prior "given-ness" of observable entities) in processes of knowledge generation (Anderson and Harrison 2010;Barad 2007;Colls 2012;Dewsbury 2012;Lorimer 2005; Thrift 2008). The above excerpts from my field journal (Figures 1 and 2) document two observations in a practiceled process, in which these questions were made present through the methodological particularities of my research. ...
Article
Full-text available
The “field” has long been contested as spatially and temporally bounded. Feminist epistemologies have re-imagined and engaged field/work as shared, messy and co-constitutive, while critical more-than-human methodologies in the transdisciplinary field of the environmental humanities are further expanding our understanding of who and what counts in the production of knowledge in the field. This compendium article orbits around a collective concern for the sharedness of bodily and planetary ecologies through field/work. It brings together cross-disciplinary accounts of field encounters that critically explore what it feels like to do this work and what it entails. With a focus on practice and process, the six contributing authors—researchers, artists, practitioners, writers—consider how nonhumans share in our research, shaping the work we do, the questions we ask and the responses we craft. Together, they offer thoughtful provocations on the troubling and promising ways in which human and non-human bodies become unsettled and rearranged through field encounters.
... Après avoir donné une place égale aux représentations de tout un chacun, il s'agit d'aller au-delà de celles-ci. L'approche en termes de représentations est en effet sujette depuis une vingtaine d'année à une remise en cause par certains courants de la géographie (Anderson et Harrison, 2010). Tenants des théories non-représentationnelle (nonrepresentational theory) et plus-que-représentationnelle (more-than-representational theory) considèrent en effet que l'approche issue de la géographie culturelle en termes de représentation en vient à « structurer, fixer et rendre inerte tout ce qu'il y a de plus vivant 25 » (Lorimer, 2005, p. 84-85). ...
Research Proposal
Mémoire recherche master 2 - Géographie de l'environnement
... Emerging from Thrift's work on non-representational theory (NRT) in the 1990s, non-representational approaches have had a significant impact on ways of thinking and doing in human geography. Work has been done elsewhere to map out the theoretical influences of NRT (e.g., Anderson and Harrison 2010) but to summarise, they have 'a practical and processual basis for [their] accounts of the social, the subject, and the world, one focused on the "backgrounds", bodies and their performances' (Anderson and Harrison 2010, p. 2). In other words, NRT has reconfigured what 'counts' as academic knowledge, engendering relational ways of thinking that reconceptualise the body as knowledgeable in itself (Dewsbury 2000) and allow affective, atmospheric, non-cognitive, sensual and other 'felt' ways of knowing to come to the fore. ...
Chapter
Full-text available
In this chapter, we address what is currently thought to be the environmental origins (and consequences) of COVID-19, from the “wet markets” of Wuhan, China, to the clearing skies over major cities around the world, from the vastly unequal realities of urban (and rural) spread and containment to the reconfiguration of urban space, climate justice, and energy futures amid efforts to “save” or “reconfigure” the economy. In addition to telling the “front story” of the pandemic’s emergence and impact as it pertains to what is commonly referred to as “the environment,” we draw on several key lenses for understanding the “backstory.” We close with reflections on what many are calling a “fork in the road”—contested decisions being taken about how far to “bounce back” to “normal” versus “bouncing forward” to a more socially and ecologically sustainable future.
... There is an extensive body of literature on non-representational and more-than-representational approaches that do not prioritize the role of representation and reasons, they also take into account the role of practices, affects, emotions to account for the interactions between humans and non-humans (e.g.,Anderson & Harrison, 2016;Lorimer, 2005).9 Reflections on Doing Cross-Cultural Research … ...
Book
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This open access book explores creative and collaborative research methods within the social sustainability sciences. The term co-creativity is used in reference to both individual methods and overarching research approaches that, through socially inclusive forms of action and reflection, stimulate alternative understandings of why and how things are, and how they could be. Supported by a wide-ranging series of in-depth—including chapters on militant research and guerrilla narrative, decolonial participative approaches, appreciate inquiry and care-ethics, deep-mapping, photo-voice, community-arts, digital participatory mapping, and living labs—the edited collection critically reviews the potential of creative, collaborative and transdisciplinary forms of research praxis to nurture just and transformative processes of change. This includes considering the role of narrative, creative workshops, visual and arts-based forms of research in contributing to engaged scholarship, as well also as a range of methods from field of critical cartography. The positionality of the researcher, together with the emotional and embodied dimensions of ‘doing’ transdisciplinary research are threads which run throughout the collection. So too does the question of how to communicate sustainability science research in meaningful way.
... The term "worlding" was first used by the English poet Thomas Drant in the mid-16th century. In contemporary research, Andersson and Harrison point out that worlding does not refer to a preserved thing but rather to the context or the background against which certain things emerge and become significant (Anderson & Harrison, 2010). ...
Article
Full-text available
This article discusses how it is possible to think with the world in educational research. How can this thinking with the world generate knowledge about the becoming of phenomena? To answer this question this paper undertakes a diffractive reading of selected texts from Niels Bohr, Karen Barad, Gilles Deleuze, Felix Guattari, Donna Haraway, and Michel Serres. This diffractive reading reveals that the world becomes with itself contributing to an internal principle or an inner self-differentiation. This means that all phenomena can be understood as related to the world in one way or another. This paper contends that the researcher body is important to investigations of the becoming of phenomena with the world, therefore a haptic sensorium is developed as a means to visualize bodily affects and to recognize limit values to the world, for example, background noise. The article concludes with a discussion about creating knowledge of this process as a rhizome. The article attempts to illustrate that thinking with the world can generate new knowledge to understand the becoming of phenomena, which can contribute to the development of educational research.
... There is an extensive body of literature on non-representational and more-than-representational approaches that do not prioritize the role of representation and reasons, they also take into account the role of practices, affects, emotions to account for the interactions between humans and non-humans (e.g.,Anderson & Harrison, 2016;Lorimer, 2005).9 Reflections on Doing Cross-Cultural Research … ...
Chapter
Full-text available
As a traditional and dominant practice of qualitative research, interviewing is heavily dependent on meanings constructed by language. In a cross-cultural setting, the challenge of adequately capturing what interviewees want to convey is well acknowledged by researchers. Indeed, meanings are not only tied to linguistic meanings but also to cultural practices. Moreover, when the focus of one’s research is to understand the mindsets and practices of farmers, focusing solely on spoken words may also hide the fact that farmers also engage with plants, soil and nature through emotions and feelings. In this chapter I will reflect on my personal experiences as a non-Japanese Asian researcher working with an interpreter during my field work in Japan. In the interviews I conducted with farmers, I used photographs of local artwork to elicit information to understand what relationships they may build between the artworks and their farming practices. I used photo elicitation to supplement the limitations of language in making sense of meanings tied to farming practices. Also, to convey results to a western audience, I explore the use of visual illustrations to complement verbal quotes to more fully convey the meaning of the quotes. Two main observations emerged from this cross-cultural experience: first, the gap between language and cultural meaning can provide valuable opportunities for researchers to experiment with different methods, that broaden our sensibilities beyond rational reasoning in data collection; second, using photography in interviews can unfold different layers of realities than talk-only interviews. I argue that visual methods can take us beyond language and open up a more diverse picture to understand the practices of farmers. It is therefore important for cross-cultural researchers to be reflexive about the limitations of language, transform these challenges to an opportunity to remake method and open up different layers of understanding.
... The third approach for thinking of (social) space relationally can be broadly described as the assemblage approach. Most directly, the assemblage approach draws on epistemic premises from the 'actor-network theory' (Latour 2005), attends to the event of 'agencement' developed by Deleuze, Guattari, and their followers (see Thrift 2008;Anderson and Harrison 2010). As a general currency, the assemblage approach is developed to address the indeterminacy, emergence, becoming, processuality, and turbulence of social-spatial events. ...
... This "non-representational" (Anderson & Harrison, 2010) cinema would not seek from a rational fixed point to "represent" the world but to "present" a world. Using the expressive freedom that art brings, it opens up to the exploration of hidden, dreamlike and mystical dimensions of Non-Western cultures (lines of flight or deterritorialization) within the realistic description of their social realities (lines of segmentarity or territorialization). ...
... Meaning transfer can be conceived of as a two-track process (see Figure 4), activated concurrently at the point of brand stimulation-a representational and an accompanying non-representational mode of affective meaning transfer. Anderson (2010) argues that these nonrepresentational processes should be differentiated from the more representational form of processing because they represent 'a class of experience that occurs before and alongside the formation of subjectivity' (p. 78). ...
Article
This study asserts that conceptualizing sensory brand experience (SBE) as an independent construct is critical to expanding our understanding of experiences provided by brands. To achieve this goal, a rigorous examination of its foundational knowledge structure underpinning the construct is urgently required. Using co‐citation analysis examining 151 SBE‐related articles with 4038 citations over more than two decades (1994–2019), six knowledge fields deemed to have constitutive influence on SBE literature have been identified: atmospherics, product evaluation, sensory marketing, service marketing, experiential marketing and brand experience. Combining the results of a hierarchical cluster analysis and a metric multidimensional scaling analysis, the authors located three fundamental premises: (1) brand settings are arbiters of brand meaning; (2) the intrinsic processing of SBE involves the entrainment of exteroceptive and interoceptive processes; and (3) SBE outcomes are non‐representational. At the end of the paper, these findings are organized into an integrative framework, highlighting research concerns and research gaps at the antecedent, processing and outcome stages. In doing so, this paper contributes to the conceptual development of SBE by constructing a doctrinal schema for future research undertakings.
... Emerging from Thrift's work on non-representational theory (NRT) in the 1990s, non-representational approaches have had a significant impact on ways of thinking and doing in human geography. Work has been done elsewhere to map out the theoretical influences of NRT (e.g., Anderson and Harrison 2010) but to summarise, they have 'a practical and processual basis for [their] accounts of the social, the subject, and the world, one focused on the "backgrounds", bodies and their performances' (Anderson and Harrison 2010, p. 2). In other words, NRT has reconfigured what 'counts' as academic knowledge, engendering relational ways of thinking that reconceptualise the body as knowledgeable in itself (Dewsbury 2000) and allow affective, atmospheric, non-cognitive, sensual and other 'felt' ways of knowing to come to the fore. ...
Chapter
Through a performative and speculative style of writing, this chapter develops the ways in which non-representational theories might provide purchase in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic. First, we present two short juxtaposing autoethnographic vignettes of our experiences of lockdown during the COVID-19 pandemic in the South of England, UK. Next, we offer some theoretical suggestions, guiding the reader through an ‘ABC’ of non-representational concepts including absent presence, affect, atmospheres, bodily knowledges and corporeogeographies, before inviting them to make their own connections and think through their own experiences. The intention here is to provoke speculation, to animate in our reader new ways of making sense of their relational, non-representational experiences of the pandemic. In this way, the chapter performs some of the tenets of non-representational thinking and doing. We conclude by speculating ourselves on the ways that the pandemic has refigured and reconstituted our own bodily boundaries and knowledges, affective and felt experiences in public spaces and everyday encounters and routines.
... Emerging from Thrift's work on non-representational theory (NRT) in the 1990s, non-representational approaches have had a significant impact on ways of thinking and doing in human geography. Work has been done elsewhere to map out the theoretical influences of NRT (e.g., Anderson and Harrison 2010) but to summarise, they have 'a practical and processual basis for [their] accounts of the social, the subject, and the world, one focused on the "backgrounds", bodies and their performances' (Anderson and Harrison 2010, p. 2). In other words, NRT has reconfigured what 'counts' as academic knowledge, engendering relational ways of thinking that reconceptualise the body as knowledgeable in itself (Dewsbury 2000) and allow affective, atmospheric, non-cognitive, sensual and other 'felt' ways of knowing to come to the fore. ...
Chapter
Covid-19 has fundamentally changed the way individuals and groups interact in their everyday lives and, thus, key constructs within social capital research. These social changes, to be explored in this chapter, are (1) trust, (2) group membership (for good or bad), and (3) social isolation. The chapter highlights novel research opportunities including well-being benefits of non-human communities, an unprecedented “natural experiment,” and the longer-term impacts of social change on both health and social capital itself. Through its re-shaping of social capital, COVID-19 offers changes which may have meaningful influence on health and well-being, beyond its direct deleterious effects. It is vital that we reflect on previous social structures and new possibilities afforded by the disruption of systems and hegemonic structures which are only now possible and could make for a healthier, equitable future.
... Emerging from Thrift's work on non-representational theory (NRT) in the 1990s, non-representational approaches have had a significant impact on ways of thinking and doing in human geography. Work has been done elsewhere to map out the theoretical influences of NRT (e.g., Anderson and Harrison 2010) but to summarise, they have 'a practical and processual basis for [their] accounts of the social, the subject, and the world, one focused on the "backgrounds", bodies and their performances' (Anderson and Harrison 2010, p. 2). In other words, NRT has reconfigured what 'counts' as academic knowledge, engendering relational ways of thinking that reconceptualise the body as knowledgeable in itself (Dewsbury 2000) and allow affective, atmospheric, non-cognitive, sensual and other 'felt' ways of knowing to come to the fore. ...
Chapter
The economic and social consequences of the COVID-19 global pandemic are both immediate and pervasive, and potentially profound. In this chapter, I take a social geographical perspective on both acute and chronic consequences, centering around the idea of the social, the hard edge of inequality, and social justice. These three components help to frame two key relationships that arguably emerge as socioeconomic consequences of the global pandemic: (1) the contradictory relationship between social distancing and social infrastructure and (2) the compounding relationship between economic hardship and so-called deaths of despair. In effect, social distancing undermines the density of social bonds and closeness so essential to social infrastructure such as libraries, markets, and care homes. Conversely, the sudden rise in mass unemployment may have long-term socioeconomic consequences for already increasing rates of suicide and drug/alcohol overdose in nations such as the US and the UK.
... The third approach for thinking of (social) space relationally can be broadly described as the assemblage approach. Most directly, the assemblage approach draws on epistemic premises from the 'actor-network theory' (Latour 2005), attends to the event of 'agencement' developed by Deleuze, Guattari, and their followers (see Thrift 2008;Anderson and Harrison 2010). As a general currency, the assemblage approach is developed to address the indeterminacy, emergence, becoming, processuality, and turbulence of social-spatial events. ...
Book
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Since the relational turn, scholars have combated methodological universalism, nationalism, and individualism in researching social-spatial transformations. Yet, when leaving the gaps between the traveling and local epistemic assumptions unattended, engaging relational spatial theories in empirical research may still reproduce established theoretical claims. Following the sociology of knowledge tradition and taking Critical Realism as a meta-theoretical framework, Xiaoxue Gao takes relational spatial theories as traveling conceptual knowledge and develops meaningful and context-sensitive ways of engaging them in studying the complex urban phenomenon in China. She offers conceptual elucidations and methodological roadmaps, which leap productively from employing plural causal hypotheses to generating effect-based explanations for locally observable events. They are exemplified by manifold interrogations of Beijing's Artworld as a conjuncture of particular events.
... Accordingly, it promotes a style of analysis driven by a material pragmatism that seeks to avoid reducing materiality to "dead" objects in everyday life. In this regard, mobilities design thinking is indebted to studies that address material agencies inspired by actor-network theory (Farias & Bender, 2010) posthumanism and alien phenomenology (Bennett, 2010;Bogost, 2012;Ingold, 2007) and not least the work-around non-representational theories (Anderson & Harrison, 2012;Thrift, 2008). ...
Article
In the aftermath of the truck attacks in Berlin, Nice, Paris, and Stockholm, new counter-terrorism measures are being installed in European city centers. Through an ethnographic approach, this article explores the socio-material effects triggered by the most conspicuous material responses to hostile vehicle treats: concrete barriers. We draw on the recent turn towards mobilities design thinking to address the béton barriers as more-than physical obstructions, but designed artefacts negotiated and re-appropriated in unexpected ways. Set in the context of Copenhagen, we explore how the concrete barriers reveal the social, cultural, and practical conditions of the city. By establishing a critical mobilities design-oriented understanding of counter-terrorism “in situ,” we seek to broaden out what the process of “designing out terrorism” entails and to discuss new participatory design processes for future transformations of the city in light of terrorism threats.
... The theory was first developed in the late 1990s in human geography and has since spread and evolved in many other fields and disciplines (Andrews, 2016b(Andrews, , 2018. NRT can be understood as an ontological approach that aims to animate the active lived world, the taking-place of events, the becomings, the movement-space(s), rather than to map what has already happened (Anderson & Harrison, 2010;Andrews, 2018;Vannini, 2015). Consequently, it is also an approach that seeks to reveal how the present might, or could, take other directions and thereby NRT aims to open up the world to other possibilities. ...
Article
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Purpose: This discussion paper aims to contribute to a greater understanding of the state of the art of research engaged with conceptual matters of space and place for health and care. Method: The authors, who represent a variety of academic disciplines, discuss and demonstrate the conceptual recognition of space and place in research in health and caring sciences building upon own work and experience. Results: To explore the concepts of space and place for health and care is a research pursuit of utmost importance, and should be made through transdisciplinary research collaborations, whereby spatial theories from various disciplines could be communicated to cultivate truly novel and well-informed research. Furthermore, engaging with relational and topological perceptions of space and place poses methodological challenges to overcome in future research on health and care. Conclusions: We argue that there is a need for accelerating spatially informed research on health and care that is informed by current theories and perspectives on space and place, and transdisciplinary research collaborations are a means to achieving this.
Article
This article reconsiders the association, common globally and ubiquitous in Neolithic Turkey, between dead bodies and domestic architecture. Residential burial has conventionally been handled in a representational framework. Buildings’ physical and meaningful aspects are analytically separated, so that they can act as ‘containers of meaning’ in funerary contexts and as concrete technologies in others. Here, a provocative dataset challenges this separation: infant bodies and curated remains buried against the bases of unstable Çatalhöyük walls, as if to reinforce them. Rather than asking what such bodies meant, I adopt a more-than-representational approach inspired by Mol’s (2002) ‘enacting ontology’ and Barad’s (2007) ‘agential realism’ that asks what bodies could do. Doing so extracts bodies and walls from separate domains of mortuary and mechanical action, and asks how they were enacted as objects within Neolithic practice. I trace practices that enacted walls and bodies in Neolithic worlds – making walls’ futures responsive to subsurface burial. This example raises broader implications for the way archaeologists investigate spatial aspects of mortuary practice, and mortuary aspects of architecture, and more broadly the way we determine what the objects of our study are.
Article
Taking inspiration from studies of ‘seeing‐and‐being‐seen’ at the vanguard of intellectual debates regarding urban life since the late‐eighteenth century, this paper explores the popular contemporary pastime of people‐watching. Drawing on cumulative theoretical, empirical, and methodological resources generated by generations of critical urbanists I highlight the ways in which geographies of people‐watching is a topic deserving of sustained academic attention. More specifically, I explore how engagement with rhythm, repetition, habit and events, testimony, and protocols offer fruitful avenues to interrogate everyday practices, mundane conversations and internalized un‐spoken dialectics that constitutes people‐watching. Concluding remarks signpost how a research agenda focused on people‐watching can add value to long‐standing and newly emerging urban geographies.
Article
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Recent work in several fields of psychology has advanced understanding of how humans imaginatively construct, simulate and (pre-)feel the future. These advances have not yet been substantively engaged in social and cultural geography. In this paper, we identify, review and begin to draw together scholarship in human geography and several subfields of psychology on the ways in which people imagine and navigate towards the future. The most influential existing work on the future in geography has concerned powerful institutional and discursive depictions of threatening times-to-come. In contrast, psychological and neuroscientific work on cognitive processes involved in prospection extends possibilities for a human geographical approach to the future considering how people relate to discursive imaginaries and spatial environments. Reinvigoration of the human geography-psychology nexus can further critical understanding of the spatialities through which futures are imaginatively formed and felt by individuals, and are thereby brought into the realm of political and social possibility.
Article
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This paper engages with digital urban futures prospectively, departing from most existing work that has tended to explore the future retrospectively. I do so by first discussing a methodology that is sensitive to the meanings and significations of the future as well as future‐making as an active process, or as “practised”. I argue that such an orientation is necessary to challenge the established view of the future as an endpoint or as a priori in social and cultural geography and, correspondingly, invite a more processual and emergent understanding of the future as multiple, never complete and always becoming. Using the example of Singapore's Smart Nation initiative, I then show how this methodological approach can be employed to study the way urban dwellers encounter, engage and evaluate possible futures in their everyday spaces and lives. Focusing on futures prospectively is significant insofar as it directs attention to their relationality and open‐endedness, which, in turn, provides the latitude to consider and construct different forms of futures. Beyond the methodological contribution, this paper offers an epistemological intervention that not only unpicks how knowledge about the future is currently produced in the literature but also multiplies our ways of studying futurity and future‐making.
Article
This paper is concerned with the conceptual, discursive, and political inclination within spatial and social thought towards enacting ‘new worlds’, ‘worlds to come’, and ‘possible worlds’. Against the backdrop of this diffuse habit, which I refer to as ‘worldly futuring’, the paper calls attention to the ongoing challenge posed by worldlessness. It asks: what is lost, existentially or politically, in prioritising world‐building over world‐ending? Articulating a response to this question, the paper examines how the investment in future worlds functions, what it secures, and what it indemnifies against. Definitionally, ‘world’ lacks the ethical designation required to explain its signalling function as a positive horizon of futurity. Worldly futuring instead relies on three connected affirmations: world presents the promise of (meta)stability, of commonality, and of meaning. In prioritising these affirmations, worldly futuring immunises itself against the possibility of their radical absence or violent undoing, thereby working around, against, or sublating the threat of wordlessness. However, building on the scholarship of Derrida on worldless alterity and theorists of black negativity’s political calls for the ‘end of the world’, the central argument of the paper is that working‐away worldlessness is neither inherently possible, nor is it necessarily desirable. Despite any attempt at immunisation, worldlessness haunts any project of worldly futuring, showing us that the assumed connection between world and futurity may well be an obstacle to radical futures.
Chapter
The production and consumption of media narratives are geographically and culturally situated phenomena, as is the act of reading and interpreting scientific information. This chapter examines the ways in which contextual factors influence the construction and reception of narratives and emergence of new geographic assemblages amidst the global health crisis of the coronavirus pandemic, which may differ considerably from more conventional scale groupings. Based on semi-structured qualitative interviews with 27 media professionals and scholars in 24 countries, the study identifies patterns of countries attuned to similar “narrative frequencies” based on their reception of dominant and counter-narratives surrounding the novel coronavirus. The project focuses on the relational dimensions of knowledge reception: questions of institutional trust and vulnerability to malicious or conspiratorial narratives; the colonization of the pandemic to reassert or reinforce dominant power structures in relation to migrant labor and refugee populations and the ways in which pre-existing cultural and political relationships with neighboring countries and dominant powers highlight the porosity of territorial boundaries and delineate new geographies of mediated meaning-making and sociospatial consciousness.
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This essay examines recent literature that advocates for a postqualitative approach to research in the social sciences and humanities. Exploring across disciplinary boundaries, this essay interrogates parallel developments in the field of education, much of which are informed by non‐representational theories in geography as well as current trends within the discipline to advance postphenomenological and posthumanist methodologies. As a starting point, the on‐going contribution of qualitative methods to human geography is acknowledged alongside a questioning of their currency in the light of posthumanism. The extreme position—that ‘conventional’ qualitative methods are based on an outmoded view of the human subject and should, therefore, be discarded—is evaluated before presenting a ‘softer’ version of postqualitative inquiry which re‐thinks the subject and troubles method, rather than rejecting it outright. The essay continues by focussing on work within and beyond human geography that aims to advance a ‘post‐’ sensibility in relation to method—one that does not eschew method itself but rather the kind of proceduralism that qualitative methods often entail—and concludes by considering the practical implications of postqualitative approaches for human geography.
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This essay is a call to decolonize affect theory through deepening its engagement with fieldwork conducted in the Global South. It examines the native Chinese concept of ganying, or resonance, as an ethnographic technique by engaging with author’s fieldwork experiences among Body Mind Spirit practitioners in China. Participating in ganying captures the formation of affective atmospheres through ethnographer’s involvement in their co-creation. Where attunement functions as a normative ideal, resonance becomes a technique of embodying responsiveness and cultivating intimacy that supports efforts to narrativize affect. Examining the genealogy of ganying and its ethnographic applications reveals this concept’s alignment with influential theorizations that in recent decades have been constructed as “new” and “paradigm shifting” contributions to the affective turn. It cautions against the risks of erasure resulting from such Eurocentric negligence of kindred notions circulated in scholarly and vernacular contexts outside of the Global North.
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Purpose: This study re-examines contemporary localization theory to understand the shortcomings of the theory using the case of a state-sponsored postcolonial technology localization project. I call for centering the analysis of the power reticulations in context-specific technology localization. Method: I engaged in extensive review of existing research on the subject and conducted ethnographic and digital surveys with users and non-users of the technology I studied. This method provided nuanced perspectives on technology localization for a grounded user experience analysis. Results: Against current theoretical assumptions that support localization in user contexts as the solution to the chasm between developer culture and user culture, I argue that the reticular nature of power and developers' neglect of users' geo-epistemology also create a chasm within localization at users' sites. Conclusion: We need to examine the complex work of power in user contexts as part of a holistic theory on technology localization in user contexts. Thus, current assumptions must be revised. This revision must insist on the primary role of users' worldings in localization. The context of the postcolony provides a privileged insight into theorizing technology localization and must not be seen only as a "kingdom of ethnography" (Mbembe, 2021, p. 14).
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La présente recherche visera à comprendre au moyen d’une approche féministe matérialiste, les répercussions de la douleur et de la fatigue chronique, provoquées par la spondylarthrite ankylosante et la fibromyalgie sur la spatialité des femmes vivant avec ces pathologies. Pour ce faire, elle montrera que la maladie est un processus d’adaptation interrelationnel, se traduisant spatialement par la recomposition des géographies quotidiennes. Elle cherchera ainsi à mettre en évidence la nouvelle normalité sociospatiale qui s’institue en réaction à une corporéité endolorie. Cette recherche postule, par conséquent, que la restructuration des spatialités quotidiennes s’articule autour d’une fréquentation de nouveaux espaces, d’une resignification de la symbolique attribuée à certains lieux et d’une diminution de certains déplacements et de certaines activités. L’hypothèse soutenue sera évaluée sous l’angle de la production discursive récoltée durant une étude de terrain exploratoire. Celle-ci a été menée au sein de communautés virtuelles dédiées à ces affections et réalisée à l’aide d’outils de méthodologie qualitative tels que l’ethnographie en ligne et l’entretien biographique
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Late Pleistocene hominins co-evolved with non-analogue assemblages of carnivores and carnivorous omnivores. Although previous work has carefully examined the ecological and adaptive significance of living in such carnivore-saturated environments, surprisingly little attention has been paid to the social and cultural consequences of being-with, and adapting to, other charismatic predators and keystone carnivores. Focusing on Neanderthal populations in Western Eurasia, this paper draws together mounting archaeological evidence that suggests that some Late Pleistocene hominins devised specific behavioral strategies to negotiate their place within the vibrant carnivore guilds of their time. We build on integrative multispecies theory and broader re-conceptualizations of human-nature relations to argue that otherwise puzzling evidence for purported ‘symbolic’ behavior among Neanderthals can compellingly be re-synthesized with their ecology, settlement organization and lifeworld phenomenology. This re-framing of Neanderthal lifeways in the larger context of startling carnivore environments reveals that these hominins likely developed intimate, culturally mediated, and hence varied, bonds with raptor, hyena and bear others, rather than merely competing with them for resources, space and survival. This redressing of human-carnivore relations in the Middle Paleolithic yields important challenges for current narratives on evolving multispecies systems in the Late Pleistocene, complicating our understanding of Late Quaternary megafaunal extinctions and the roles of hominins in these processes.
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Especially in rural and semi-rural contexts of the Global South, where access to broadband internet remains limited or unavailable, how does moving from in-person teaching to remote instruction affect students’ opportunities for learning critical digital literacies? In the context of moving to remote language instruction during the COVID-19 pandemic, this article analyzes the resources and cultural repertories that English as a foreign language (EFL) teachers and students in rural Colombia use to develop opportunities for learning in materially and affectively challenging conditions of local and global uncertainty. Analysis draws on interviews with three EFL teachers and artifacts of their remotely delivered language instruction for students in veredas, small rural villages approximately an hour from the closest urban center. Drawing on interdisciplinary developments in affect theory that have recently influenced critical sociocultural theory in literacy studies, the authors describe how attention to these affective geographies of critical language education in the context of a global pandemic illustrate opportunities for, and unexpected constraints on, learning critical literacies in EFL. Implications for teaching and research include how attention to digitally and physically imbricated affective geographies are necessary for foreign language teacher education and professional development, especially as continued uncertainty related to global health and environmental challenges produce new and unexpected affective conditions for teaching and learning. Keywords: digital literacies; affect theory; rural literacies; online teaching; mobile literacies
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The thesis 'Moving Organizational Atmospheres' provides a conceptual and empirical exploration of the notion of organizational atmosphere as a non-dualist concept. Both conceptually and analytically the thesis seeks to contribute to discussions in the fields of organizational aesthetics as well as the affective and spatial turn in organization studies by addressing how organizational atmospheres work when embraced as a fluid phenomenon, and by providing an analytically experimental account of experiencing and producing organizational atmosphere based on field work in two organizations.
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en The spatial variability of population aging in rural areas of Canada, and the demographic processes that underlie these areal patterns, are reasonably well understood. Research to date emphasizes processes of population redistribution (e.g., net out-migration), regional economic change (e.g., resource-based economic restructuring), and chronologically-centred models of bodily decline as the major features of population aging in rural contexts. This literature has informed a wide range of gerontological research and policy, but there is much more to be said about becoming older in rural Canada. In this paper, we present the outline of a post-representational approach to rural aging. We consider the influence of relational and non-representational forces acting on the experience of aging in rural Canada. We then draw on reflections of earlier work in a particular geographic setting as a means to tease out “more-than-representational” considerations for discussion. We also echo recent calls to address a “blind spot” in geographic scholarship that overlooks the considerable extent to which older persons re-shape their community environments. We conclude with an invitation for a greater engagement with older person/place transformations, including closer attention to the processes and performances of “aging-through-place” in other Canadian settings. A propos des transformations des lieux et des gens: vers une géographie plus que représentationnelle du vieillissement au sein du Canada rural fr La variabilité spatiale du vieillissement dans les régions rurales du Canada et les processus démographiques qui sous-tendent ces modèles territoriaux sont relativement bien connus. Jusqu'à présent, la recherche a mis l'accent sur les processus de redistribution de la population, les changements économiques régionaux et les modèles centrés chronologiquement de déclin corporel, trois éléments considérés comme étant les caractéristiques majeures du vieillissement dans les contextes ruraux. Cette littérature a servi à documenter un large éventail de politiques et de recherches gérontologiques, mais il y a beaucoup plus de choses à dire au sujet du vieillissement au sein du Canada rural. Dans cet article, nous offrons un aperçu de l'approche post-représentationnelle à l'égard du vieillissement rural. Nous étudions l'influence des forces relationnelles et non-représentationnelles qui agissent sur l'expérience du vieillissement en milieu rural. Nous nous inspirons ensuite des travaux antérieurs sur cet environnement particulier afin de soulever des considérations « plus que représentationnelles ». Nous reprenons également les appels récents à s'attaquer à cet « angle mort » de la géographie, laquelle néglige le rôle des personnes âgées dans le façonnement de leurs espaces communautaires. Nous concluons par une invitation à un plus grand engagement envers la recherche sur les transformations des lieux et des gens âgés, y compris la question du processus et des performances du « vieillissement selon le lieu » dans d'autres contextes canadiens.
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en Digital labour scholars have produced insightful analyses of the unpaid, creative, affective labour performed by users on social media platforms. Meanwhile, an increasing number of scholars have been studying the hidden labour of content moderators: underpaid, contingent workers who enable the sanitised online spaces that users take for granted by removing disturbing content. Drawing on ethnographic fieldwork with third-party Facebook content moderators in the USA and Ireland, I argue that the case of content moderation affords us a new way of putting these approaches into conversation with one another. Specifically, I illustrate how content moderators perform affective labour – for themselves and for the platform – in ways that make possible the monetisation of users’ cultural activities. In doing so, I draw attention to the human costs of maintaining user ‘safety’ and thus the profitability of large social media platforms. Modération corporelle: travail numérique comme bien affectif fr Les spécialistes du travail numérique ont produit des analyses perspicaces du travail non rémunéré, créatif et affectif effectué par les utilisateurs des plateformes de médias sociaux. Entre-temps, un nombre croissant de chercheurs se sont penchés sur le travail caché des modérateurs de contenu : des travailleurs sous-payés qui, en supprimant les contenus dérangeants, permettent la création d’espaces en ligne aseptisés que les utilisateurs tiennent pour acquis. En m’appuyant sur un travail ethnographique de terrain avec des modérateurs de contenu tiers sur Facebook aux États-Unis et en Irlande, je soutiens que le cas de la modération de contenu nous offre une nouvelle façon de mettre ces approches en conversation les unes avec les autres. Plus précisément, j’illustre comment les modérateurs de contenu effectuent un travail affectif - pour eux-mêmes et pour la plateforme – de manière à rendre possible la monétisation des activités culturelles des utilisateurs. Ce faisant, j’attire l’attention sur les coûts humains liés au maintien de la « sécurité » des utilisateurs et donc de la rentabilité des grandes plateformes de médias sociaux.
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The prominence of witness testimony in a range of contemporary political events is reflected in interdisciplinary efforts to theorize the act and genre of witnessing. Notably, this literature has framed the occurrence of errors, contradictions and other instances of ‘problematic’ speech in testimony as attesting to the traumatic quality of disastrous events. In this paper we extend this line of reasoning by recasting the fundamental quality or ‘witness‐ness’ of disaster survivor testimony outside a logic of representational correspondence. Instead, drawing on the philosophy of Maurice Blanchot, we suggest that the disorienting features of testimony can be interpreted as the disruptive influence or inscription of the disaster itself upon the recollections of survivors; a certain ‘writing of the disaster’. Furthermore, we suggest that different disasters disrupt the testimonies of its survivors in unique ways, thus imprinting a signature that betrays the material and psychological character of the event. The ‘witness‐ness’ of survivor testimony is therefore argued to dwell not in its representational accuracy, but in the distinctive, signature ways that it disorients the search for a coherent accounting of the disaster. We explore this proposition first in relation to Nazi death camp survivor testimony, before exploring this approach in the very different testimonial context of the 2011 tsunami in Tohoku, Japan. In the wake of these readings, we argue that the concept of the signature has potential not only for broadening the repertoire of testimonies admissible in the study of disaster, but also for investigating the societal impacts and ‘countersignatures’ of disasters more generally.
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Building on critical geographic research on the embodied politics of labour that has explored how different forms of work transform bodily capacities for action, this paper argues that a body’s capacity to be affected is an overlooked aspect of a labouring body’s power. In response, the paper develops the concept of anaesthesia in relation to work by explaining how a reduced capacity to be affected can be both politically constraining and enabling for the bodies involved. Through qualitative fieldwork with digital platform workers, the paper presents three narratives that express the embodied complexities of this insecure work. Concealment, projection and resignation are explored as anaesthetic bodily tactics that constitute a refusal to inhabit certain depleting experiences. By drawing attention to such survival strategies, the paper highlights how workers’ changing capacities for feeling are just as significant for understanding worker agency as their changing capacities for action.
Article
The significance of testimony as a means of investigating camp spaces is indicated by the extensive literature analysing the eyewitness accounts of Nazi camp survivors. This paper builds on ongoing methodological debates in geographies of the Holocaust to suggest that witness testimony provides a valuable and multifaceted resource for investigating diverse aspects of camp spatiality. After offering an overview of the kinds of camp spaces emergent in camp survivor testimony, the paper draws on the writings of Auschwitz survivor Charlotte Delbo in order to describe and illustrate two methodological approaches to witness accounts. The first is based on the irreplaceable value of survivor testimony as a source of first‐hand observational data, with Delbo’s unconventional descriptions of camp spaces and spatialities connecting with numerous core themes in geographical work on the Nazi regime and camp spatialities more generally. The second focuses instead on the capacity of witnessing to disturb the incorporation of testimonial descriptions into academic narratives, and in turn provoke new geographical questions and imaginaries in response to the singular act of testimony.
Article
Assemblage theory has made a significant impact on the theoretical landscape of human geography over the past decade, providing the discipline with a ‘radically constructivist’ account of social and cultural life that is no longer anchored to the process of human meaning making. Despite this growing popularity, however, geographers have recently voiced concerns about the critical efficacy of contemporary assemblage approaches, which often rely on the application of scientific terms like emergence and complexity to social and cultural processes. This temptation to overemphasize the physics of assemblage is problematic, I argue, because it tends to obfuscate the concept’s political significance and leads to accusations of a lack of criticality. In this paper I revisit the philosophy of Deleuze and Guattari with the aim of bringing the political implications of the assemblage concept into sharper focus. While more commonly associated with A Thousand Plateaus, I trace the conceptual genealogy of Deleuze and Guattari’s assemblage concept through to their earlier collaboration Anti‐Oedipus, where the two philosophers develop a novel framework for political theory based on a radically constructivist model of desire. In doing so, I show how Deleuze and Guattari’s political commitment to re‐think desire in machinic terms is what makes assemblage theory both a critique of capitalist subjectivity and a provocation to think the conditions of social and cultural life beyond the human.
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This essay maps an emerging philosophical and praxiological turn in contemporary performance studies toward the concept of “natureculture.” Natureculture – a concept established in counterpoint to the bifurcated spheres of “nature” and “culture” – offers performance studies scholars new opportunities for research and aesthetic production. The opportunities described in this essay include new interdisciplinary partnerships, expansions of performance theory into nonhuman arenas, and revised theories of the relationship between performance and embodiment.
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Time has not often been the subject of dedicated conceptual attention in health geography, but one does not need to dig very deep in the literature to uncover diverse engagements with it across empirical research. Framed by particular theoretical understandings of time, this paper reviews these engagements and how they have helped shape geographical knowledge of disease, health and care. Whilst these engagements are welcomed, the paper also highlights the possibility of going further by focusing on systems fundamental to 21st‐century society. Specifically, it describes the need to develop approaches that might ‘keep time with the trouble’ by capturing and intervening in the timings of the new faster, technologically mediated, affective capitalism in its use, creation and detraction of health and well‐being.
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The lived experiences of gender transition highlight tensions between new and traditional western conceptions of gender and identity, and afford an intimate and unusually broad insight into the mechanisms through which subjectification is gendered and gender subjectivised through daily practices of fashion and style. This experimental, practice-based contribution makes playful and subversive use of a fashion activity book intended for young women and girls to document the author’s experiences of gender transition, taking as its cue the notion that the challenges and joys of transition in many ways resemble a form of second adolescence. It draws on an extended ethnographic engagement with gendered social space to explore how we might rethink the question of subjectification in fashion and style as a fundamentally distributed and yet intensely personal social process. The accompanying text maps out some of the project’s theoretical impetuses, methodological affordances, and onto-political implications.
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In their editorial for the first issue of Tourist Studies, Adrian Franklin and Mike Crang made us aware that tourism research had shifted to an exploration of the extraordinary everyday where ‘more or less everyone now lives in a world rendered or reconfigured as interesting, entertaining and attractive – for tourists’. From our standpoint 20 years later, we suggest this particular departure point has important insights to offer our understanding of a quintessential tourism event, that of the festival, which now intervenes in daily life in all manner of ways. In this commentary, we present a reflective commentary on recent scholarship that advocates for more rigour in festival studies, with greater theory development and testing within the festival context, and how this work is suggestive of future directions for festival research. We present several areas that are ripe for further research, particularly given the tumultuous nature of the world we are living in, such as the challenges of climate change and how we might socialise in a post-Covid world. Much has changed in the 20 years since the inception of Tourist Studies, but festivals remain resilient – they will re-emerge in future, perhaps not unscathed but with a renewed sense of purpose.
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This chapter explores the relationship between an artist’s creative practice, and the creativity of people with dementia. Using concepts of domestic creativity and cultural improvisation, it explores some of the ways in which creativity occurs as part of everyday life in a care home. It argues that seemingly mundane activities such as sleeping and watching television can be seen as creative acts, which are associated with homemaking, and negotiating new social situations. Rather than thinking of arts practices in care homes in terms of their transformative potential, it considers collaboration as two sets of creative practice meeting in the middle. It considers some ways that artists can engage with the everyday creativity of a care homes, and how concepts of care are fundamental to this collaboration.
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This paper set out to do three things: First, it proposes that a given technology (here drones) may prompt scholarly reflections around key ontological dimensions of the world. The advent of drones thus invite urban theorists to ‘think with the drone’ and reflect upon if our primarily two-dimensional conceptualisation of cities and spaces needs revision. Answering this in the affirmative leads to a need for so-called ‘volumetric thinking’ as the second task of the paper. The emergence of drones necessitates us to comprehend the ‘space between the buildings’ and the vertical dimension as key dimension of urban space (which for many still are confined to a simple two dimensional ‘flat world’ view). This touches upon the third ambition of the paper. By adding a new ‘point of view’ in a literal sense drones also prompt us to think about aerial visions of the city. How can volumetric thinking be coupled with the new aerial vision in such a way that it enhances our critical understanding of the spatial conditions of cities? The position of this paper is that we need the volumetric ‘corrective’ not just to counter old habits of ‘flat cartographies’, but also to prevent the new aerial views opened up by drone technologies to simply become an extension of the ‘old two-dimensional view’.
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This paper poses questions on the possibility of styles of working besides ‘affirmationism’. The paper begins by defining negativity as a force or status of disunification, and traces how it remains closely associated with dialectics within Geography. The paper goes on to explore how the renunciation of dialectics has meant that negativity more generally has been rendered outside thought, with a concomitant uptake of an affirmationist ethos. Despite the promise of such work, there remains disquiet. What is omitted or elided in the uptake of affirmationism? Critiques, largely from outside the discipline, highlight how affirmationism privileges the lively and Life, novelty and experimentation, and the generous and generative in conjunction with a suspicion of negativity. We particularly hone in on and reflect on three ostensible limits of affirmationism: affirmationist vitalism, affirmationist politics, and affirmationist critique. We argue that renouncing dialectics does not entail, necessarily so, a concomitant abandonment of negativity. Indeed, we need to embrace attempts to think and act which elude, or dispense with, the propensity to affirm, making space for affects that are far from hopeful, for those becomings‐otherwise which do not increase capacities to act, or for modes of critique that refuse; in other words, for that which is besides affirmationism or simply ‘unaffirmable’. Crucially, however, we point towards the dangers of a simple (re)turn to negativity, preferring a steadfast refusal to settle these tensions.
Thesis
Landscape has been constructed as a fundamental element of study of Geography. In recent decades, many territories have undergone major changes. These are not only clearly visible in the landscape, such as deforestation, reconstruction of buildings or depopulation, but they also take on subtler forms, such as the loss of social relationships, identity changes and other diverse dynamics. In this context, tourism has a strong impact on the territory, on the landscape and on social relationships. Within the Portuguese territory, there are many, especially in the north of the country, which face economic, social and environmental problems, due to their geographical location, mainly in typically rural and mountainous areas. Tourism plays a fundamental role here that needs to be analyzed. This master's dissertation is mainly focused on the analysis of the transformations that took place in the landscape of Pitões das Júnias, a village in Trás-os-Montes province, located within the boundaries of the Peneda-Gerês National Park. The analysis has as its starting point a work published in 1981, by the ethnologist Manuel Viegas Guerreiro, entitled Pitões das Júnias: Esboço de monografia Etnográfica [Pitões das Júnias: Sketch of an Ethnographic Monography]. It seeks to establish a dialogue and parallel between the landscapes of this work and the current landscapes. Methodologically, a vast fieldwork was developed that included, above all, the observation of the space under study, a photographic survey, in conjunction with the photographs presented in the aforementioned monograph, inspired mainly by the method of visual comparison used by the photographer Duarte Belo. Questionnaires were also used, which were subsequently addressed to the local community and tourists. The results obtained made it possible, at first glance, to conclude that the local community recognizes the benefits that the growth of tourism has brought to the region. In the second instance, it was also possible to conclude that the transformation that took place in the landscape, especially in its buildings, is mainly due to the fact that some owners of small businesses, restaurants and local accommodation, begin to follow certain and determined market trends in which, above all, they seek other forms of income in addition to agriculture, as well as by the inhabitants who seek better living conditions and comfort, which results in the transformation (construction, rehabilitation, modernization) of the built landscape.
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