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Urban Hitchhiking: Wandering with Others as a Research Method


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This essay introduces urban hitchhiking, a reflective practice of sharing a walk with strangers, and considers its relevance for research and artistic practice. Drawing from ethnography, psychogeography and performance studies, we frame urban hitchhiking as a score that has ethnographic potential akin to the ethnographic installation (Hartblay 2017) for exploring the complex relationships between people and cityscapes. We demonstrate this with the help of our own accounts of Urban Hitchhiking as two artists who developed the concept and a researcher who practiced it. The essay summarises four perspectives that emerged from our findings: spatiality, performativity, gender, and hospitality. It concludes that the key value of urban hitchhiking lies in its potential to create a setting that we define as an empathetic drift, which turns random encounters into shared acts of trust through which a variety of anthropological questions can be explored.
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Tuuli Malla, Anna Kholina and Lauri Jäntti
Urban hitchhiking: Wandering
With others as a research method
this essay introduces urban hitchhiking, a reective practice of sharing
a walk with strangers, and considers its relevance for research and artistic
practice. Drawing from ethnography, psychogeography and performance
studies, we frame urban hitchhiking as a score that has ethnographic
potential akin to the ethnographic installation (Hartblay 2017) for exploring
the complex relationships between people and cityscapes. We demonstrate
this with the help of our own accounts of Urban Hitchhiking as two artists
who developed the concept and a researcher who practiced it. The essay
summarises four perspectives that emerged from our ndings: spatiality,
performativity, gender, and hospitality. It concludes that the key value of
urban hitchhiking lies in its potential to create a setting that we dene as an
empathetic drift, which turns random encounters into shared acts of trust
through which a variety of anthropological questions can be explored.
special section
half hero, half idiot:
the hitchhiker as ethnographer
We would like to introduce you to urban
hitchhiking. e score is fairly simple: take a
sign that says, ‘May I walk with you for a while?’
Place yourself on a pedestrian route (Figure 1).
Stand somewhere along that path, raise your
thumb and search for eye contact with people
who are passing. Wait until someone approaches
you and then let the journey begin. Often the
person who oers you a lift will ask what this is
about. We tend to say that this is an experiment,
that we are trying out what happens when we
encounter a stranger. But urban hitchhiking is
more than a talk with a stranger. It is a drift in
city space guided by interaction with another
person, a constructed situation where the
randomness of encounter confronts the intimacy
of the interaction. Sometimes the drift leads to
shopping for a thimble or discussing what it
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Special section: e hitchhiker as ethnographer
means to encounter someone, and sometimes to
a brief walk to a bus stop or an overnight stay.
It is a challenge both for the Hitchhiker and for
the person who accepts the invitation, an act of
trust and an intervention into the regular course
of urban life.
Urban Hitchhiking was developed by Tuuli
Malla and Lauri Jäntti during several iterations
of their artistic experiments. e third author,
Anna Kholina, practiced Urban Hitchhiking in
her own research after learning about the practice
from Malla and Jäntti. e aim of the article is
to introduce the practice of urban hitchhiking
and consider its relevance for research and
artistic practices that tap into the complexities
of human nature and contemporary urban life.
We examine urban hitchhiking through the
lens of psychogeography and ethnography,
and later through our own accounts of doing
it. What is the value of this practice? What
kind of questions can it answer? What role
does a performative aspect play and how is it
manifested in the results? By analysing our
own accounts and experiences, we frame urban
hitchhiking as a performative score in line with
the ethnographic installation (Hartblay 2017),
as a prism through which a variety of themes
can be explored. We present four of these
themes: spatiality, performativity, gender, and
hospitality, and conclude by highlighting the
value of wandering with others that we dene as
empathetic drifting.
Urban Hitchhiking is a way to engage with
people while moving together in space. It is
based on walking as an activity that connects
spatial settings and human routines in a form
of a dialogue, although it is not restricted
to walking and may include other forms of
movement or stillness according to the course of
events. Walking is itself a practice that produces
particular relationships with the environment
(de Certeau 1984; Ingold 2011; Solnit 2000)
which facilitate sensing and learning about
spaces, discovering and transforming the city,
mutually constituting bodies and landscapes, and
constructing meanings in human-environment
relationships (Pinder 2011; Middleton 2010).
Walking is both an appropriation and an
exploration, a way to connect time and space
Figure 1. Hitchhiker about to get a ride. Photo by L. Jäntti.
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Special section: e hitchhiker as ethnographer
(Edensor 2010) and a mode of experiencing
place (Wunderlich 2008).
At the same time, urban hitchhiking is
avery specic form of walking. First of all, the
hitchhiker makes herself visible and available for
a shared walk by holding out a raised thumb as
a sign and by making an eye-contact. Secondly,
the practice takes place only if another person
volunteers to take part and lead the way. irdly,
the walk is mostly a conversation. Finally, the
route of the walk is not restricted in advance
in time and space, rather, it is a form of a drift
where the hitchhiker follows the directions of
the participant and actively immerses herself
in the situation and the lifeworld of the other.
Based on this description, urban hitchhiking is
related both to the psychogeographic practice
of dérive and the walking interviews used in
ethnography. e following section will draw the
parallels between the above mentioned practices
and urban hitchhiking, outlining the distinctive
qualities and the potential of the latter.
Urban hitchhiking
and the dérive
e dérive or drifting is ‘a technique of
transient passage through varied ambiances’
(Debord 1963) used by e International
Situationists’ movement to confront ‘the society
of the spectacle’ (Bassett 2004: 401) in which
commodities and consumption dominate the
city. It is ‘a mode of experimental behaviour’
(McDonough 2004: 215) based on a sensibility
towards the changing atmospheres of the space
and the urban landscape: ‘one should abandon
oneself to the attractions of the terrain and
the encounters one nds there’ (Debord 1963).
In practice, it can mean taking a walk in Paris
with a map of Rome or using any pre-dened
principles to randomise the course of the journey
and become more sensitive to the mundane
cityscape. is technique is a part of what the
Situationists called ‘a psychogeography’—a
study of the eects that the geographical
environment has on the aective responses of
the individual.
Urban Hitchhiking presents a form of
drifting wherein random encounters dene the
course of the journey and construct the situations
that uncover the narratives and personal stories
embedded in the urban realm. Like the dérive,
it helps identify the hidden borders, aectual
contours, and sensual ows of the city space. e
hitchhiker notices these changes through a sense
of intimacy in the moment of sharing a memory
with a stranger or in the act of buying groceries
together, while entering someone’s home or
a private car. Even though urban hitchhiking
does not have a critical political agenda as its
foundation, it challenges society by provoking
the non-scripted behaviour of engaging in a
stranger’s life.
Although perceived as a solo activity, early
dérives were done in groups of two or three
people and Debord advocated wandering for
a lengthy amount of time in order to create a
true dispersal (Wilcox, Palassio and Dovercourt
2002: 96). e participants of the dérive should
share political, aesthetic, and philosophical views
to cross-check their impressions and arrive at
more objective conclusions (Macauley 2000:
31; Wood 2010: 187). is is dierent from
urban hitchhiking in which the participants do
not necessarily share common views and goals
(Laviolette 2017) and there is no emphasis
on coming to any specic conclusions. As the
participants of urban hitchhiking change, new
views, routes, and experiences emerge, turning
the hitchhiker’s experience into a collage of
shared journeys led by encounters with strangers.
ere are other dierences as well. e
Situationists preferred ghettos and slums
(Bassett 2004: 402), while for a hitchhiker the
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Special section: e hitchhiker as ethnographer
emphasis is on the quality of the encounters
and the level of openness of strangers rather
than their attribution to a certain social class.
Finally, whereas practitioners of dérive are
looking outwards, the starting position of urban
hitchhiking places the gaze on the person
who is Hitchhiking, echoing the critique of
the tradition of dérive’s being rooted in the
male gaze (Bridger 2013). e presence of the
hitchhiker in the city space, a stranger who is
waiting to be interacted with, is the opposite of
the anonymous view behind the camera that is
associated with the male gaze. Being exposed
is an essential part of urban hitchhiking and
it renders the gender imbalances visible, as
we will demonstrate in the later section. Even
when the walk has started, the hitchhiker is still
exposed: a sign or an unusual combination of
people walking together draws the attention of
Urban hitchhiking and
the Walking intervieW
Ethnography has a long-standing tradition of
methods based on movement through space.
Walking interviews create a natural setting
for studying interlocutors’ everyday routines
(Kusenbach 2003: 464), generating rich data
‘because interviewees are prompted by meanings
and connections to the surrounding environment
and are less likely to try and give the “right”
answer’ (Evans and Jones 2011: 849). Known as
a go-along, a method of walking together with
the interviewee shares many similarities with
urban hitchhiking: ‘When conducting go-alongs,
eldworkers accompany individual informants
on their “natural” outings, and—through asking
questions, listening and observing—actively
explore their subjects’ stream of experiences and
practices as they move through, and interact
with, their physical and social environment.’
(ibid.: 463). However, there are several qualities
that dierentiate the two practices.
In the same way as a person on a dérive,
the ethnographer usually prefers to remain
unnoticeable, but for an urban hitchhicker
with a sign and a raised thumb, it is dicult
to stay incognito. Moreover, urban hitchhiking
highlights the initial strangeness of approaching
a stranger with the intention of going along with
them. Although the walk itself may resemble a
go-along interview, the act of inviting people’s
company has a strong performative dimension
that emphasises intruding into the course of
someone’s daily routines. Yet the same happens
when an ethnographer rigorously follows
his informants’ practices, making notes and
jottings. e articiality of urban hitchhiking as
abehaviour plays an important role as it renders
the Hitchhiker the Other in relation to those
whose behaviour does not attract attention.
Hitchhikers purposefully stand out from the
crowd with a somewhat absurd invitation,
which draws attention to their initiative of
encountering strangers. is otherness changes
the dynamics of researcher-subject relations as
the hitchhiker presents herself as the subject
by being the Other, rather than adopting the
role of the observing ethnographer. Perhaps
even more prominent than the role of the
hitchhiker’s going along with a stranger is the
role of astranger’s going along with the idea of
social hitchhiking. Rendering oneself the Other
(as a hero and idiot) exposes the hitchhiker’s
strange logic from rst moment of encounter.
is sense of empathy and exposure while
presenting oneself in an urban space echoes the
idea of heroic activist anthropology outlined
by Susan Sontag (1966): being honest about
one’s motives and being open to emotional
collisions, for example when entering someone’s
home (Figure 2), challenges Hitchhikers to
become more aware of their presence and their
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Special section: e hitchhiker as ethnographer
responsibility for the people with whom they
share the journey. Another dierence between
ethnography and urban hitchhiking concerns
the scope of people included in the practice. In
certain forms of urban ethnography, the focus
is often on the deviants, outcast groups, and
minorities (Suttles 1976: 1). Urban hitchhiking
does not aim at reaching specic types of people
although it is always connected to the particular
space where the journey unfolds. Documenting
urban hitchhiking experiments allowed Jäntti
and Malla understand that the randomness
of encounters allowed them to reach a wide
spectrum of participants in terms of age,
gender, and social status, although they did not
specically target that variety.
an ethnographic
Not exactly a drift or an ethnography, urban
hitchhiking borrows the features of both
practices. Its performative aspect dierentiates
it from traditional research practices and
brings it closer to art. To avoid labelling it as
an artistic or a research practice, we frame
urban hitchhiking as a practice akin to the
ethnographic installation (Hartblay 2017), a
term elaborated by Cassandra Hartblay to refer
to a ‘a generative part of a dialogic practice of
ethnographic knowledge production’ (2017: 1),
highlighting that the research process itself is a
cultural performance.
e concept of ethnographic installation,
understood as a way of engaging with con-
temporary art practice to explore an ethno-
graphic problem, reects the process of how
urban hitchhiking came into being. In 2015,
it emerged out of a conversation Lauri Jäntti
had with someone he bumped into by chance.
Right after the conversation, Jäntti tried out
pedestrian hitchhiking; this did not lead into
getting a lift in the rst fteen minutes as he
was holding his thumb up by the entrance
to Stockmann department store in central
Helsinki. A sign was later developed during
several stages of experimentation and workshops
in St. Petersburg, Arkhangelsk, Lappeenranta,
Tartu, and Prague. Ethnographic problems in
the beginning were posed by the strangeness of
the activity and the goal of breaking the divide
between people who do not know each other.
Later, other research perspectives were added,
such as the invisible borders between public and
private space in cities.
Figure 2 & 3. Photographs from a Hitchhiker’s visits to domestic spaces: allotment (left) & home (right).
By L. Jäntti
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Special section: e hitchhiker as ethnographer
Some of the most well-known pieces of
performance art based on following strangers
are Vito Acconci’s Following Piece (1969) and
Sophie Calle’s Suite Vénitienne ( Jeries 2009),
both based on a secretive task that carries its
poetry in a one-way relationship that contains
a risk of the ‘stalker’ being discovered. In
#TAKEMEANYWHERE by LaBeouf, Rönkkö,
and Turner (Coldwell 2016) the stalker situation
was reversed as the artists relied on someone to
nd them based on their coordinates, posted
online, and take them anywhere from there.
Framing urban hitchhiking in line with the
ethnographic installation (Hartblay 2017) avoids
the dualistic distinction of art versus research in
our work: Artistic practice can become not only
an “output” for ethnography, but also a mode
of research’ (ibid.: 9). It also encourages a focus
on the dialogic and embodied knowledge that
is produced through this practice, taking dual
perspectives and experiences into account: those
of the participant and the hitchhiker. In the
following section we present our own accounts
of practicing urban hitchhiking in order to
discuss how an ethnographic installation
becomes a setting to explore the complex
relations between people and urban space.
practicing Urban
ere was a lot of divergence in how we
practiced urban hitchhiking. We asked ourselves
dierent questions and walked with a dierent
number of people for varied durations of time
in dierent spatial settings. When we set out to
analyse our accounts, the themes emerging from
them had very little overlap. at and the later
comments of our colleagues made us think that
urban hitchhiking is not a method with clearly
dened inputs and results, but a setting through
which dierent research and artistic perspectives
can be explored. Below we present four of these
perspectives and our ndings.
1. spatiality
Studying the invisible structure of urban
space is the core question of this perspective.
Urban Hitchhiking allows the researcher(s) to
map the experiences of both the Hitchhiker
and the participant in relation to the physical
environment, and to analyse the rhythms,
meanings, and practices that dene the
boundaries of private and public spaces. is
perspective resembles psychogeography as it
makes the Hitchhiker aware of the invisible
boundaries which divide the urban fabric.
Anna Kholina experimented with Urban
Hitchhiking in spring 2017 to learn more about
part of a university campus which included
a variety of public areas that were devoid of
public life. Physically, the space does not have
clear boundaries or restriction signs, meaning
that a newcomer does not know where the
study area ends and the student village starts.
By hitchhiking with the students, Kholina
wanted to understand how the public space
was structured and how homogenous it was
in dierent parts of the campus. One of her
accounts illustrates the process of discovering
the hidden boundaries of the public space:
I was standing on one of the small
pedestrian roads some fty metres away
from the University building when a
student agreed to give me a ride. As we
talked, I learned that she was on her way
home to the student village and was overall
very satised about the campus space.
She particularly stressed the presence of
nature and the possibility to get away
from other people as positive qualities. It
resonated with the nature of her studies:
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Special section: e hitchhiker as ethnographer
as an engineer, she preferred concentration
and solitude to buzz and interaction. I was
surprised and left her on the edge of the
student village, not far from the study area.
But when I tried to nd the next ride, I
encountered a problem. Nobody was
making eye contact with me and people
were avoiding me to the extent of crossing
the street in the opposite direction as soon
as they saw a person holding a sign. Even
when a dozen people exited a bus just in
front of me, none of them even looked my
way. I felt like an intruder who was breaking
some laws or unspoken rules. It was then
that I realised that I found the border
between public and private space, although
there was no visible change. I repeated my
attempt several times before returning to
the publicness, which happened to be just
across the street. In less than ve minutes,
I was walking with a lady pushing a stroller
who now accepted my eye contact.
is account illustrates how the process of
interacting with people through the practice of
hitchhiking rather than focusing on the physical
qualities or the atmosphere of the space meant
that the perceived publicness and privateness
could be traced. e shift from public to
private space was not explicated by hitchhike
participants, but rather emerged as embodied
knowledge of not being welcome in a particular
2. performativity
e performative dimension of urban
hitchhiking is subtle, more an attitude than
a perspective, which is based on following,
listening, and staying in the moment with the
person (or people) with whom one is sharing
a journey. is attitude creates a space for the
other to open up but there are many dierent
levels of attention, depending on the encounter.
e clearest element of performativity consists
in the moment of standing still and waiting
with a sign and a thumb. ere are reactions
from the people passing by which inuence the
hitchhiker; some look down and try to avoid the
situation, but they are still in a dialogue with
the hitchhiker. e performative dimension
is related to the reexivity of the artist or
researcher, which meant that awareness about
one’s own body and the way other people react
to it became another important perspective that
was explored while wandering with others.
Leading urban hitchhiking workshops
made Malla and Jänti realise how important
embodied skills are to the hitchhiker’s trip.
e very fact of becoming visible through
hitchhiking requires patience in the moment
of waiting and allowing people to look at
oneself. e experience of hitchhiking can be
uncomfortable or pleasurable depending on
one’s own mood and expectations as well as
external impulses, which are partly a response
to the inner mood shining through but also
related to the locality. Helsinki’s fancy Töölö
neighbourhood was dierent to the city’s edgy
Kallio. Töölö is an area associated with wealthy
and often older inhabitants while Kallio is a
former working-class neighbourhood that has
been gentried in recent years (Karhula 2015).
Smaller-scale dierences were noticeable when
comparing Hitchhiking on a square and a street
with regard to accessing ows of people to meet.
3. gender
In terms of unintended performativity of
gender, Urban Hitchhiking made Malla
consider the role of an open oer for encounter
in association with being seen as a female body.
Prior to Urban Hitchhiking Malla had various
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Special section: e hitchhiker as ethnographer
experiences of drifting without thinking of
the male gaze. Comments from people who
approached her, though perhaps intended as
compliments, revealed the tension between the
assumed neutrality of following someone and
the role of a young female open to invitations.
e types of comments were nothing new but
the position of being open in this way made
it challenging to maintain the boundaries that
would normally be in place. Someone asked
Malla to go home with her, refusing the oer
to walk together only part of the journey, while
someone else asked: Are you selling yourself
too?’ In a similar vein, others warned her of
possible rapists, and a journalist commented
that he was surprised she did not face much
sexual harassment. For Malla the encounter-led
drift revealed the role of a female body in the
chance journeys in a way that made her revisit
the gendered aspect of the psychogeographical
tradition. In fact, she saw herself as part of the
lineage of psychogeographers and only came
to enquire into the tradition more deeply after
comments to which she was exposed during
urban hitchhiking. Malla’s personal view of the
performance as one presenting a gender-neutral
body—of not regarding her own work in terms
of gender binaries (Butler 2011 [1990])—
conicted with the comments regarding her
body that she received.
4. hospitality
e ease in situations where one would expect
to be outside one’s comfort zone became one
of the most signicant experiences for Malla.
In hindsight these situations often seemed
strange when retold to others but in the reality
of Hitchhiking they had not seemed strange at
all: for example, queueing for free food together
with a stranger in what is colloquially known as
‘the bread queue’, ocially Veikko and Lahja
Hursti’s Charitable Association, which is often
portrayed as a site of poverty (Hirvonen 2017).
Queuing with a person who had agreed they
could walk together was a part of the journey,
a transition from familiar streets to a place she
had never thought to visit before, an invitation
into another social realm which in the end was
surprisingly approachable. is experience of
queueing around the block with someone she
had never met before, among other journeys,
changed Malla’s perception of boundaries, social
structure, and access in the city. Practicing Urban
Hitchhiking re-articulates social interactions
and also impacts on the hitchhikers’ behaviour
outside of the practice. Much as an ethnographer
becomes a local (Geertz 2008 [1983];
Jeevendrampillai 2016), the urban hitchhiker
starts to behave according to their hitchhiking
mode of openness to encounters even when not
actually hitchhiking. For example, Malla found
herself talking to strangers with greater ease
than before and her perception of its being hard
to encounter people in Helsinki shifted. Kholina
noticed that this practice shortened the period
of entering the eld in her research and revealed
social groups she had not taken into account
earlier. Interactions with strangers become the
norm rather than an exception.
What became most signicant in the
project for Malla were sudden moments of
intimacy upon hearing a story that describes
a person’s life. e most memorable of these
consisted of the fragility in stories sharing the
tragedy and beauty of a life. Even before starting
urban hitchhiking, Malla had suspected a
universal need to share these stories with others,
even with strangers. Urban hitchhiking provides
the opportunity to do so by creating a space to
meet someone in the middle of the everyday:
the hitchhiker, who is oering to listen. ese
experiences were documented in the form of a
diary (Figure 4).
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Special section: e hitchhiker as ethnographer
is article considers urban hitchhiking, a
practice of wandering with others, as akin
to the ethnographic installation (Hartblay
2017), an activity that allows exploration of
the complex relationships between people and
space from the perspectives of art and research.
Building on our own accounts of doing urban
hitchhiking, we introduced four perspectives
that reect our interests: spatiality facilitates
examination of invisible borders in the urban
fabric; performativity explores the bodily skills
which are needed to start a random encounter
on the street; gender renders visible the
imbalances between the male and female body
in urban space; and hospitality highlights the
diculty and ease of establishing temporary
intimacy with strangers. e common thread
that unites these perspectives is that the process
of knowledge production is open, dialogic,
embodied, and situated in space and time. It
is exactly for this reason that we posit urban
hitchhiking in relation to the ethnographic
installation (Hartblay 2017) rather than as a
research method or an artistic practice.
Urban hitchhiking also extends outwards
from ethnography and psychogeography. e
communication between the two journeys of
drifting and purposeful movement creates a
crossroads between two ways of walking and
makes the hitchhiker’s motives visible to the
other person. Borrowing from both the walking
interview and the rive, Urban hitchhiking
possesses a unique quality that turns it into a
setting for exploring a variety of socio-spatial
phenomena. We characterise this quality as
an empathetic drift, which is a mutual, shared
act of trust that emerges in a particular space
and develops in time (with its failures and
limitations, from which one can also learn). It
is a process of mutual attuning of strangers in
which the hitchhiker opens up to the world and
the participant opens part of her life in response.
It produces a methodological empathy towards
the participant and a return of hospitality for
Figure 4. Tuuli Malla’s Hitchhiking diary
  |       50
Special section: e hitchhiker as ethnographer
the Hitchhiker that tap into intimate and
intangible aspects of our urban existence, such
as social isolation, gender, privatisation of space,
and the role of the body in breaking through the
strangeness. It is a form of study which can be
developed with further comparative insights.
Looking at projects of walking with
strangers—e People Walker of LA (Carroll
2016), Rebecca Cade’s performance project
Walking Holding (2011; 2015), and, for example,
Kio Stark’s TED talk (2016) on the importance
of talking to strangers (2016)—it seems there
is an urgent need to nd ways of connecting
with each other. In our experience of urban
hitchhiking, walking together in public space
is intimate and yet oers ease: there is a shared
journey and pace, being seen together while
simultaneously being able to talk about things
around us and not being face to face. As the
setting changes, the social dynamics also shift,
especially when entering a home.
e four perspectives that we
outlined—spatiality, performativity, gender,
and hospitality—demonstrate that urban
hitchhiking as an ethnographic installation is
suited to elicit rst-person, embodied knowledge
of Otherness in dierent contexts. It is a practice
between art and research, performance and life:
a short mutual act of trust that seems almost
like a remedy to the alienation and isolation of
contemporary urban dwellers. ‘May I walk with
you for a while?’
1 We would like to thank everyone with whom
we hitchhiked, those who have tried Urban
Hitchhiking themselves, Sissi Korhonen for
being part of developing Urban Hitchhiking, Dr.
David Jeevendrampillai for support during the
Hitchhiking process and for suggesting readings,
as well as Francisco Martínez and Matti Eräsaari
for their helpful comments on the article.
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... The acknowledged student perspectives form the starting point to the next phase where we identify significant citizen groups involved or affected by the raised issues. In the spirit of recognizing positively people's contextual and situated ways of knowing, we gather data with different methods: desktop study of other cases in Tampere and beyond; observing urban hitchhiking [68] interviews; workshops; and exploring embodied ways of experiencing space. Our ambition is to build a versatile knowledge base for creative urban development, following the ideals of positive recognition. ...
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... kysymyksiin olisi mahdollista vastata, opintojaksossa opiskellaan erilaisia osallistavia menetelmiä ja harjoitellaan niiden käyttöä. Opiskelijat perehtyvät esimerkiksi osallistavaan valokuvausmenetelmään ja "photovoiceen" (Delgado 2015;Liebenberg 2018;Wang & Burris 1997), kävelymenetelmiin (Kusenbach 2003;Malla, Kholina & Jäntti 2017) ja mentaalisten tai kognitiivisten karttojen käyttöön (esim. Lynch 1960). ...
Hyvinvointipalvelujen kehittämisessä painotus on eri toimijoiden yhteisessä työskentelyssä. Artikkelissa kuvataan yhteiskehittämisen lähtökohtia ja Diakonia- ammattikorkeakoulussa yhteiskehittämisen avuksi luotua Palveluintegraation muotoilu -valmennusta.
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„Topo” to mapa drogi wspinaczkowej i skała poddana obiektywizacji. Dostarcza ona pierwszej wiedzy o danej drodze. Mapy nie są jednak tylko przedstawieniami obiektów przyrodniczych, lecz także reprezentacjami złożonych, ucieleśnionych oraz temporalnych praktyk społecznych. Wspinaczka to zatem pewien cielesny stan i epistemologiczna dyspozycja, dzięki którym wspinacz pokonuje kolejne metry skały. Postawione w artykule pytanie brzmi zatem: jak wytwarzana jest ta wiedza i doświadczenie; jak przebiega tranzycja z wiedzy pierwszej, wydawałobysię zobiektywizowanej, ku subiektywnej wiedzy rodzącej się podczas aktu wspinania?
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In this article we analyse local community-based concepts and practices related to establishing a new middle-class identity when under social and “environmental” pressure. We based our ethnographic inquiry in “RA” – a Warsaw suburb – well-known as a former village but now a location for industry and waste-processing plants. Its vicinity, despite being populated, is polluted by heavy traffic, noise and an unpleasant odour, all of which recently have become the stimulus for social mobilisation and intense criticism toward the local authorities and an inconsiderate urbanisation policy. A key role here is played by two organisations, both exerting a strong influence on the new middle/creative class living in gated communities – a novel phenomenon for the local sociocultural landscape. We argue that this activism and struggle for a clean environment is rooted in the post-1989 Polish politico-economic transformation and the emergence of new middle-class identity projects. Thus, we reveal that sustainable urbanisation and “green policies” in Poland are embedded in middle-class identities, and gain momentum especially when class identity and image are under threat.
Hitchhiking is often articulated as a flight of fancy, a search for freedom and adventure. Its history runs parallel to that of the motor car and like this object of capricious consumption can be seen as a manifestation of supreme individualism. Hitching certainly holds ‘dividualistic’ properties in being about opening one’s mind and increasing our levels of mutual tolerance by meeting people more or less on their own terms. It is also about trust, conviviality and other shared experiences. Yet despite all this, hitchhiking is often a solo form of travel which is hyper driven by the participant’s ego, by their curiosity, their determination and their stamina. Likewise, its decline in the West can be attributed to the perception of living in a world of increased individualism. Amongst other things, drivers are less likely to stop because of a lack of willingness to share their personal space and/or their time. Potential hitchers are less likely to attempt this form of transport because of the desire to travel alone and in a more predictable manner, in the comfort of relatively cheap coaches, trains or planes. Neoliberalism is a main culprit here. We are flooded with online sites offering the opportunity to co-share anything from bikes, work spaces, repair skills and so on. This is a lucrative industry. At its best, it helps reduce congestion, provides employment, standardises services against certain risks. At its worse, this sharing craze relies on little more than App. platforms that allow some users to flog their hand-me-downs to customers who unwittingly nab up poor services or products. Toying with the notion of the total social fact/fiction, this chapter explores some of these paradoxes through examples illustrating the lighter and darker sides of ride-share/hitchhiking ‘gifts’.
Full-text available
Hitchhiking is often articulated as a flight of fancy, a search for freedom and adventure. Its history runs parallel to that of the motor car and like this object of capricious consumption, can be seen as a manifestation of supreme individualism. It certainly holds dividualistic properties in being about opening one's mind and increasing our levels of mutual tolerance by meeting people more or less on their own terms. Or about trust, conviviality and other shared experiences. Yet despite all this, hitchhiking is often a solo form of travel which is hyper driven by the participant's ego, by their curiosity, their determination and their stamina. Likewise, its decline in the West can be attributed to the perception of living in a world of increased individualism. Amongst other things, drivers are less likely to stop because of a lack of willingness to share their personal space and/or their time. Potential hitchers are less likely to attempt this form of transport because of the desire to travel alone and in a more predictable manner, in the comfort of relatively cheap coaches, trains or planes. Neo-liberalism is a main culprit here. This chapter explores some of these issues in relation to the decline yet survival of the hitchhiking phenomenon in Europe.
Conference Paper
Through anthropology at the edge, this thesis looks at how social projects form in dialogic relation to the ‘other’ as they meet and contest the meaning, values and forms of the material world. This PhD emerged between two social projects who aimed to make better suburbs. One, the Adaptable Suburbs Project (ASP) aimed to release the “untapped potential” of suburbs through a methodology of architectural analysis that combined different data sources. An online mapping platform aimed to collect oral testimonies from residents to reveal the “meaning, values, symbols” of the built environment. The location of a mountain, destroyed by a giant, was added by a group of local enthusiasts - the “Seething Villagers”. Playing with notions of history, myth and “fact”, Seethingers create events and “stupid” stories to create meaningful communities which “allow people to shine”. The story was refused by the ASP as the historical “fact” compromised the communicative ideal of deliberative democracy that underpinned the mapping project. Both social projects, one making better through academically informed planning policy at a national level, the other through forming “resilient” communities at a local level, met again in a council meeting. Here one social project, - Seethingers, as local citizens - articulated the values and meanings of the built environment through the framework of the other in order to object to planning application. It is here where the effects of the refusal were felt again. Producing efficacious knowledge and articulations about the world takes “work”. This thesis asks what sorts of subjectivities emerge at the edge of social projects, in moments of contestations, and what is lost in this process? Subjectivities emerge, not from the centre of a social project, but from the edge where it is always meeting the other. This thesis examines (and is) the material transfer of knowledge of ‘the other’ and its social, ethical and political implications.
What happens when an ethnographer takes up the idiom of contemporary art installation to explore an ethnographic problem? Building on performance ethnography as developed by Dwight Conquergood and D. Soyini Madison, in which the research process itself is cultural performance, this article describes a methodological innovation that encourages a rethinking of ethnographic outputs. Contemporary art installation is generative as well as representational, and challenges ethnographers to think by doing. This article describes one such project to show that while a minimalist installation aesthetic does not on the surface constitute ‘thick description’ in the Geertzian sense, it can be a generative part of a dialogic practice of ethnographic knowledge production. Integrating the interpretive tradition with feminist disability studies, my argument is that art installation offers a possible mode for ethnographers to work through ideas, solicit participation from academic audiences and research participants, create semiotic relationships, and come to know by doing.
Walking has moved into increasing visibility in social, cultural, and geographical studies as well as art and cultural practice in recent times. Walking practices are often mobilised as a means for sensing and learning about spaces. for enabling reflection on the mutual constitution of bodies and landscapes. and for finding meaning within and potentially re-enchanting environments. Through the influence of Michel de Certeau in particular, the idea that walking 'encunciates' spaces and is a creative, elusive, and resistive everyday practice, counterpoised to the 'solar eye', has become commonplace. This paper focuses on projects by the artist Francis Alys that are based on walking in London and other cities, to consider their engagements with the politics of urban space. Attention is paid to walking as his method of unfolding stories, and to its potential to unsettle and bring into question current realities, especially in the context of the regulated, fortified, and surveilled zones of London. Addressing the poetics and politics of his spatial practices, however, reveals the inadequacy of undifferentiated models of creative resistance, nomadism, and subversion beloved of much recent theory, and often endorsed through a partial reading of Certeau. Instead, the openness and ambivalence of these practices suggest a need for a more nuanced approach to the multiple rhythms. trajectories, and narratives that constitute urban spaces as well as to their contested (in)visibilities.
Anthropology is a disciplined inquiry into the conditions and potentials of human life. Generations of theorists, however, have expunged life from their accounts, treating it as the mere output of patterns, codes, structures or systems variously defined as genetic or cultural, natural or social. Building on his classic work The Perception of the Environment, Tim Ingold sets out to restore life to where it should belong, at the heart of anthropological concern.
Perhaps even more than walking in the wilderness, 1 sauntering and strolling in the city and its suburbs involves multiple, repeated and deeply imbricated border crossings, including nested neighborhoods, traffic flows, ethnic enclaves, residential and commercial zones, subcultures, historical sites, sacred spaces and outcroppings of the wild in parks, cemeteries and abandoned lots. In this sense, urban walking is by its very nature a transformative practice because the moving body and the plurality of places it inhabits are constantly conjoined and then decoupled in new ways that come to reveal the metropolitan world in its manifold dimensions. In the following essay, pedestrian practices and problmes in the urban environment are explored along with their broader relation to what may be called peripatetic politics. The withdrawal of the walker's world and the decline of the walking city are described in conjunction with an attempt to uncover the close connection between walking and place. In the process, the sites and situations of urban walking are elucidated, including sidewalks and streets, promenades and parks, and outdoor or indoor malls. By contrast, we can observe the manner in which auto culture tends to change or curtail contact with our surroundings, encouraging a kind of self-absorbed "sleep walking".
Within UK pedestrian policy, walking is promoted as a sustainable mode of transport that benefits both the body and mind. However, much policy discussion assumes all walking to be the same and a largely self-evident means of transport, whilst many academic engagements with walking are highly abstract theorisations that lack any systematic empirical exploration of actual pedestrian practices. As such, there is little that unpacks the experiences of those who navigate, negotiate, and traverse the city streets in their day-to-day lives. In contrast, this paper aims to situate and understand the practice of everyday walking in the unfolding experiences of urban pedestrians. Walking is positioned and understood as a socio-technical assemblage that enables specific attention to be drawn to the embodied, material and technological relations and their significance for engaging with everyday urban movements on foot. The analysis draws upon in-depth interview and walking photo diary data from participants in the inner London boroughs of Islington and Hackney. Particular analytic attention to the different styles and conventions of urban walking and how these are intimately linked to bodily senses and the materiality of the city provides an opportunity for creating an increased engagement between urban and pedestrian policy and urban and social theory.
Sophie Calle: Stalker, Stripper, Sleeper, Spy. The Guardian.
  • Stuart Jeffries
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