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CRIT-GEOG-FORUM  January 1999

CRIT-GEOG-FORUM January 1999

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Subject:

conceptions of space (results)

From:

Rob Kitchin <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

[log in to unmask]

Date:

Wed, 27 Jan 1999 13:08:41 +0000

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Dear all,

I had quite a few responses from list members in relation to my request for
help concerning conceptions of space/represenation - most from people
asking me to share responses - so here they are.  As the following quote
illustrates, it is amazing that a clear outline, suitable for students, of
different theories relating to space does not seemingly exist - a nice task
for someone is to draft such an introductory piece (and I do mean
introductory!):

  'One thing that did strike me when I first got in contact with geographers, 
  was when I asked someone, "Well, what exactly ARE the theories of space 
  that undergraduates (and post graduates) are taught?" Partly I suspect 
  that it wasnt an easy question to answer briefly, but partly I wonder 
  whether student geographers are meant to ABSORB (say Cartesian or 
  post-structuralist) them by osmosis somehow(!!??)'

Hope they are of use,
thanks to those who sent material,

Rob

-------------
E-mail responses:

what about robert david sack's books - including one that was published 
  recetnly and was revieed in i thnk the last but one issue of progress in 
  human geography.

Rob, didnt Sack do a book on space a few years ago and James Blaut 
  had an article in Prof Geog about 15 years ago! 

Couclelis H. Location, place, region, and space. In: Geography's 
  inner worlds (Abler R. et al., eds). New Brunswick (N.J.): 
  Rutgers University Press, 1992, 215-233. 
  Couclelis H., Gale N. Space and spaces. - "Geografiska Annaler", 
  1986, 68B, N 1. 
  Dictionary of Human Geography. 3d edition Cambridge: Blackwell, 1994 
  Entrikin J.N. Place, region, and modernity. In: The power of place. 
  Boston, 1989. 
  Fell J.P. Heidegger and Sartre. An esasay of being and place. New 
  York, 1979. 
  Hakli J. Territoriality and the rise of modern state. - "Fennia", 
  1994, v. 152, N 1, 1-82. 
  îÅidegger M. Being and Time. London: Basil Blackwell, 1983, 589p. 
  Pickles J. Phenomenology, science, and geography. Cambridge: 
  Cambridge University Press, 1985. 
  Relph E. Geographical expereriences and being-in-the-world: The 
  phenomenological origins of geography. In: Dwelling, place & 
  environment (Seamon D., Mugerauer R., eds). Dordrecht - Boston: 
  M. Nijhof, 1985, 15-31. 
  Sack R. Conceptions of space in social thought. London: Macmillan, 
  1980.

Stuart Hall's introductory essay (The work of representation) in the 
  OU book edited by him called "Representation" (Sage, 1997) is 
  wonderfully clear and well-written.

I've found some of Andy Merrifield's work useful on these questions. 
  Try 

  Merrifield, A (1993) 'Place and Space - 
  A Lefebvrian Reconciliation',in TIBG, 18:4 p516-531 

  Merrifield, A (1995) 'Lefebvre, Anti-Logos and Neitzsche - An 
  Alternative Reading of The Production of Space', in Antipode, 27:3 
  p294-303 

  These are most focussed on Lefebvre than the others that you 
  mentioned. 

  There is always dear old David Gregory's tub thumper Geographical 
  Imaginations (esp chapter 6, in particular 368-395) as a good intro, 
  and I've been told that Stephen Hawkings Brief History of Time also 
  deals with these questions clearly, (but I'm only repeating what I've 
  been told!). 

  On representation: 

  Cosgrove, D (1985) The evolution of perspective, 
  in Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers, v1 p45-62, 

  and an odd little book 

  Crosby, A W. (1997) The Measure of 
  Reality: Quantification and Western Society 1250-1600, Cambridge 
  University Press, Cambridge. (esp ch 5,7,9) 

  It may not be exactly what you're looking for either, but I found 
  Stuart Hall's piece 'What is this 'black' in black popular culture' 
  (available in The Stuart HAll Reader, ed. Morley & Chen, Routledge, 
  1996) to be one of the most thought provoking articles I've ever read 
  on the politics of representation.

Alternative perspectives on urban inequality 
  Geoforum 15 (1) 75-82   David Smith 

  Looks at same problem using three different spatial theories

maybe some of these references may suit your purposes: 

  1. English overview articles: 

  CURRY, M. (1996): On Space and Spatial Practice in Contemporary Geography. 
  In: Earle, C., Mathews, K., Kenzer, M.S. (Hrsg): Concepts in Human 
  Geography. Lanham, Maryland: 3-32. 

  SIMONSEN, K. (1996): What kind of space in what kind of social theory?. In: 
  Progress in Human Geography, 20 (4): 494-512. 


  2.a) In case you read german: 

  KLÜTER, Hans (1986): Raum als Element sozialer Kommunikation. In: Giessener 
  Geographische Schriften, 60. 
  {Comment: He treats as a coding concept within social systems, it is the 
  only work so far (worldwide?) that used Luhmanns theory of autopoietic 
  systems for a notion fo space, or a equivalent respectively.} 

  REICHERT, Dagmar (Hrsg.) (1996): Räumliches Denken. Verlag der Fachvereine, 
  Zuerich. 
  {Collection of understandings of space within many scientific disciplines} 

  WERLEN, Benno (1995): Sozialgeographie alltäglicher Regionalisierungen. 
  Band 1, Zur Ontologie von Gesellschaft und Raum. Stuttgart. 
  {Probably best critical reconstruction of concepts of space within 
  philosophy from Aristotle to Einstein; by far the most profound text on 
  space I know so far at all; section on space is roughly one third of the 
  book. Maybe Benno has something in english as well: 
  [log in to unmask] 


  2.b) If you can wait, or if you would be happy with manuscripts: 

  WEICHHART, Peter (1999): Die Räume zwischen den Welten und die Welt der 
  Räume. Zur Konzeption eines Schlüsselbegriffs der Geographie. In: 
  MEUSBURGER, Peter et.a.. (Hrsg.): Subjektzentrierte Handlungstheorie 
  [working title?]. Franz Steiner, Stuttgart. [will be published probably 
  summer/fall 99] 
  ZIERHOFER, Wolfgang (1999): Die fatale Verwechslung. 
  Zum Selbstverständnis der Geographie. In: MEUSBURGER, Peter et.a.. (Hrsg.): 
  Subjektzentrierte Handlungstheorie [working title?]. Franz Steiner, 
  Stuttgart. [will be published probably summer/fall 99] 
  {These two texts are a result of an ongoing discussion between the authors 
  about the concept of space in geography; both argue in slightly different 
  ways to regard space as a scheme to order facts of different kind, but 
  unlike Kant not as an apriori scheme}

>From James Blaut
Me, "Space and Process," PG 13,4(1961):1-7
Me again, "Object and Relationship," PG 14,6(1962):1-7.

"Space and Process" is reprinted in W.K.Davies, ed., *The Conceptual
Revolutionm in Geography*. London: [publisher?] 1972.

=========================================================
Dr Rob Kitchin,
Department of Geography,
National University of Ireland,
Maynooth,
County Kildare,
Ireland.

Tel: +353 1 708 3372
Fax: +353 1 708 3573
Alt. E-mail: [log in to unmask]
http://www.may.ie/staff/rkitchin/


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