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Imagining Futures of Energy

Views from Central Asia

Markus S. Schulz

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Imagining oneself

Narrative evaluations of the professional identities of learners in a transnational higher-educational setting

Kevin Haines

This article uses a narrative approach to investigate the learning experiences of third-year medical students in a transnational higher educational setting, specifically during an elective period abroad. The students evaluate their learning experiences in an unfamiliar environment both in relation to previous learning and in relation to their possible or imagined future professional identities. Through this process, these students demonstrate how learning may take place through participation outside or alongside the formal curriculum, in the informal and the hidden curriculum (Leask and Bridge 2013). These narrative evaluations represent a reflective resource for the learners and their peers. They may also provide other stakeholders in transnational higher educational settings, including teachers, programme coordinators, educational managers and policy-makers, with an understanding of the experiences of mobile students in the informal curriculum.

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‘Life Is Tight Here’

Displacement and Desire amongst Syrian Refugee Women in Jordan

Morgen A. Chalmiers

) suggests, constrict temporal horizons, severing the ties that tethered once-imagined futures to the reality of the present. A memorable exchange with Rayan rendered these connections starkly apparent. To conclude our first interview, I had asked her what

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Textual Spaces of the Past, Present, and Future

Claudia Mitchell

past, a consideration of the present, and a looking towards imagined futures. It also helps us to appreciate the interrelatedness of textual spaces so that that it is possible to consider what might be regarded as classics of colonial literature for

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Autonomous Driving and the Transformation of Car Cultures

Jutta Weber and Fabian Kröger

imagined futures—prototypes, media images, and popular discourses of driverless cars—in order to understand how global players are attempting to prefigure our mobile future. We want to know whether the current media discourse genders or degenders the future

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A Call from Raqqa

Reconfiguring Future Imaginaries in Forced Displacement

Lana Askari

how the ongoing war in Syria and the Rojava Revolution gave way to newly imagined futures and political possibilities for Kurdish Syrians in forced displacement. Viewing the Syrian war—and the broader Middle Eastern context—as a system of unpredictable

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Key figure of mobility

The pilgrim

Jackie Feldman

Zygmunt Bauman wrote that whereas the modern problem was to construct an identity and keep it stable, the postmodern one was to avoid fixation and keep all options open. He characterises this shift from solid modernity to liquid postmodernity as the movement ‘from pilgrim to tourist’: the pilgrim follows a lifelong path through the desert of life. Along the road, sacrifices are made, pleasures foregone, byways ignored, immediate rewards forsaken, to achieve one's ultimate goal. In liquid modernity, the pilgrim is replaced by the tourist, the systematic seeker of diversity, pleasure and novelty. I argue that Bauman's image of the ‘plodding pilgrim’ does violence to the multiplicity of pilgrim experiences. I show how historical pilgrimage has involved risk‐taking and serendipity, a suspension of social ties and routines as well as a desire for transcendence. Contemporary pilgrimage often includes a desire for intimacy, intense bodily experience, changed attitudes towards time and nature and the quest for self‐transformation. Pilgrimage may forge alternative bonds of community and provide new ways of imagining futures. The pilgrim, far from being an icon for a frozen past, is a figure that embodies many aspects of contemporary mobility and identity.

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Probing the past and imagining the future


Frances Pine

The socialist states of the Soviet Bloc fell, some gently and some far more abruptly and even violently, between 1989 and 1991. In the two decades that have followed, there have been continual attempts by politicians, social scientists, and other academics, as well as by the citizens of these “former socialist countries” themselves, to come to terms with competing memories of what socialism meant, was, and might have been. Simultaneously, efforts to weigh up and assess a range of very different pasts are matched by forecasts of imagined futures that somehow continue to be driven by and predicated on this complex and kaleidoscopic remembered history. The present, the here and now, can, however, be even more complicated; in some ways it neither escapes entirely from the past nor really sets the stage for the future, but rather is a continual state of “becoming”. Just as “memory” is never a “true” reflection of a time or an event, but rather a multiple layering of recollections that change each time they are evoked, none of these complex and rather messy temporalities actually matches the “real” past, present, or future—all carry complex moral judgments, reflect moral questions, and embody the tension between what might have been, what is, and what should be.

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The Personal and the Political

Simon Coleman and Sondra L. Hausner

references to the ways in which preachers attempt ambitiously to reimagine urban infrastructure as religious infrastructure, just as Binning shows us how a Californian Buddhist community similarly refers to the power of imagining futures in both metaphorical

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Imagining Mundane Futures

Sarah Pink and John Postill

In this article, we propose a mode of anthropology that reflects on possible and imagined futures and how we might access these through a focus on mundane everyday activity. In doing so, we mobilise a design anthropological approach, drawing on