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Citizenship Inc.

Negotiating Civic Spaces in Post-urban America

Paul Edwards

This article builds on theories of space to suggest that the spatialised public-private dichotomy may be redundant and that civic space has become a more useful language of the success, or otherwise, of publicly accessible spaces. Taking my impetus from the seemingly hyper-privatised space of the shopping mall I argue that private space can be civic space if it encourages, using theorist Iris Marion Young's terminology, 'social justice', and the mixing of diverse peoples and uses. Alongside the shopping mall, I examine the much-hyped Disney town of Celebration in Florida to illustrate how distinctions between public and private space have become increasingly blurred, before concluding with a discussion of recent efforts on both sides of the Atlantic to produce effective design approaches in creating civic space. The approach in this article is more pragmatic than theoretical given the minimal theorising about 'civic space' to date. Although I provide a brief overview of the established literature, most still relies on the 1960s writings of French geographer, Henri Lefebvre, who called for space that 'signifies the right of citizens and city dwellers, and of groups they (on the basis of social relations) constitute, to appear on all networks and circuits of communication, information and exchange.'

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Achebe's Spatial Temporalities

Literary Chronotopes in Things Fall Apart and Arrow of God

Harry Olufunwa

Human perception is most commonly shaped by the ostensible "concrete" nature of things, that is, by their existence at specific moments of time and in particular locations in space. In spite of longstanding philosophical enquiry into the issue of "whether time has a continuous or discontinuous structure", there is clearly a close correspondence between the progression of time and moment in space.

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Alexander Badenoch

Until recently, broadcasting in Europe has been seen by historians and broadcasters alike as intricately related to national territory. Starting immediately after the Second World War, when West German national territory was still uncertain, this article explores how the broadcasting space of the Federal Republic (FRG) shaped and was shaped by material, institutional, and discursive developments in European broadcasting spaces from the end of World War II until the early 1960s. In particular, it examines the border regimes defined by overlapping zones of circulation via broadcasting, including radio hardware, signals and cultural products such as music. It examines these spaces in part from the view of the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), the federation of (then) Western public service broadcasters in Europe. By reconstructing the history of broadcasting in the Federal Republic within the frame of attempts to regulate European broadcasting spaces, it aims to show how territorial spaces were transgressed, transformed, or reinforced by the emerging global conflict.

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Between the Linguistic and the Spatial Turns

A Reconsideration of the Concept of Space and Its Role in the Early Modern Period

Yair Mintzker

This exploratory essay seeks to unravel the inherent contradictions between two fundamental trends in contemporary historiography: the “spatial turn” on the one hand, and the “linguistic turn” on the other hand. The “spatial turn,” it argues, turned “space's” status as a category of analysis into an accepted dogma. Under these circumstances, one often overlooks the fact that “space,” like all concepts, can also be problematic and at times even misleading. By looking at several examples from and about the intellectual world of early modern Europe, the article demonstrates how the use of space as a category of analysis encounters two fundamental challenges. First, the problem of the absence of the word “space” itself from important early modern texts (“shrinkage”); and second, the overuse of the term “space” in translations and analysis of early modern intellectual works (“contamination”).

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Rebecca Posusta

The ability to control where and how any given space will be occupied is a coveted but elusive privilege for the heroines of Jane Austen's novels. Though blessed with an admirable blend of independence of mind, spirit and moral fortitude, they are women for whom the privilege of space is often either an intangible desire or an oppressive reality. In Persuasion, Austen deliberately creates a problem with space. She purposefully contradicts what is expected in public and private behaviour by presenting a heroine who is at first constricted by her place; who begins to expand the number of spaces she is able to occupy; and then, finally, begins to defy her place. This article explores how this use of physical and psychological space in Persuasion evolves and how Austen involves her heroine in the discourse of social change through both narrative description and a new accessibility of psychological landscape.

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Autonomy and the Spaciousness of the Social in Denmark

The Conflict Between Ungdomshuset and Faderhuset

Stine Krøijer and Inger Sjørslev

This article is concerned with the idea of societal 'spaciousness' and its relationship to individual and collective autonomy. These issues are analyzed in the context of the eviction of a self-managed social center of left-radical activists in Copenhagen and the protests and public debate that followed. The authors find that societal spaciousness in Denmark is metaphorically associated with a house or a limited physical space. People should limit themselves in public space, as in a house, to 'make room' for all. Because youngsters are not conceived of as fully fledged political subjects who are able to conduct themselves appropriately in public space, they become a group of special concern. The authors argue that space should be conceived as a dimension of social relations, and that sociality relies on a temporal assemblage of people, things, and imaginaries with space.

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Andrea Felicetti

This article analyzes contemporary democracies from a deliberative democratic standpoint and focuses on the connection between public and empowered spaces. The idea of deliberative systems and the concept of “transmission” are introduced to discuss the ways in which the public is able to affect the empowered spaces. While elections perform important democratic functions, alone they cannot provide a good quality means for connecting deliberation in the public to that of actors in the empowered space. The problem with transmission is exacerbated to the extent that alternative forms of participation are neglected. The limited ability of the public to affect the empowered space in deliberative and democratic ways contributes to the crisis of democratic systems. One solution to this problem is to acknowledge the role of citizens' deliberation. The article argues for the systematic introduction of spaces for citizens' deliberation that would parallel existing decision-making.

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"All Transportation Is Local"

Mobile-Digital-Networked-Technologies and Networked Orientations

Joseph F. Turcotte and M. Len Ball

In an increasingly mediated situation, mobile, digital, and networked technologies (MDNTs) prompt individuals to orient themselves in new ways to the spaces they traverse. How users and communities experience these technologies in relation to the environments around them subsequently affects mentalities, including perceptions of space and mobility. The mediating presence of digital technology interconnects internal and external factors through diverse social and technological networks. This paper uses interdisciplinary theoretical perspectives to argue that ubiquitous MDNTs alter the ways that individuals orient themselves in relation to the spaces, both on- and offline, that they traverse. By mediating various visual, audible, and informational aspects of daily life while remaining implicated within external networks of related experiences, individuals move through on- and offline spaces in ways that allow the subject to negotiate her local environment(s). Experiences of mobility and space become more fluid as spatial subjectivities and mobility become integrated.

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Kipling's Singing Voice

Setting the Jungle Books

Stephen Benson

Bringing the jungle to book, in the case of Kipling’s Jungle Books, involves representing it by the book, according to an organic, hierarchical division of the space. We first meet the toddler Mowgli when he has just learnt to walk, so initially he must be spoken for, but the narrative then skips ‘ten or eleven whole years’ (43), by which time Mowgli has grown into his voice and the central discursive space of the jungle, that of the ‘Free People’. Around this space are organised peripheral sites and inhabitants which serve to establish and maintain its legalised centrality.

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Cross-Border Networks

Labour Migration from Iran to the Arab Countries of the Persian Gulf

Shahnaz R. Nadjmabadi

This article examines migration between the Iranian coastal regions of the Persian Gulf and the nearby Arab countries. At the centre of the research are questions about cross-border relationships, the construction of transnational spaces in border migration and strategies for maintaining networks in both the home and host countries. The transnational space connecting the Iranian coastal region and the Arab countries resembles other cases of border migration. However, unlike previous studies on border migration, this analysis situates the development of transnational spaces of migrants' lives within the deep-rooted common and historical perspectives in the countries on both sides of the Persian Gulf.