The course introduces contemporary theories on relational geography, with a particular focus on literature related to actor-network theory. The course aims to provide examples of, and discuss, how to apply such theories in landscape and urban studies. Researchers within planning, geography, architecture and landscape architecture will be invited to discuss key concepts and their experiences of the strengths and difficulties of tracing relational space in a research world dominated by Euclidean representations and modern categorization. The invited guests will also take part in the literature seminars, which forms the base of the course.
The course includes literature seminars and lectures, a workshop with invited scholars, and participation in the two-day conference Relational landscape studies of urbanisation, 12 – 13 June (see www.landscapestudies.se). The course offers theoretically focused lectures but also a few shorter lectures aiming to provide examples from researchers within the field. The course ends with a seminar discussing the papers written by the students.
To complete the course the student must take an active part in 80% of the seminars. Students will be asked to give a summary (ca 5 - 10 mins) of the literature for the seminar, before starting the discussion. The student should also write a paper, ca 10 – 15 pages, in which her/his research is being discussed from a relational point of view. The course literature and should be discussed in the paper. Finally, the student will be asked to present his/her paper, and comment on the other student’s papers, at the final seminar.
Date: March 2014 – September 2014
Number of doctoral students: 5 – 15
Examiner: Mattias Qviström
Mattias Qviström, SLU
Mattias Kärrholm, LTH
Richard Ek, Lund University
Katarina Saltzman, Göteborg University
Anne Tietjen, Copenhagen University
Emma Paulsson, SLU
Greet De Block, Katolieke Univ Leuven
Nik Luka, McGill University, Montréal
The course is introduced with an intense two days programme aiming to introduce the basics of relational thinking, its philosophical context and give a brief introduction to the various discourses within the field. Thereafter seminars will be dispersed over a longer period in order to facilitate for the students to absorb the texts and their ways of conceptualising space, matter and relations. The pre-conference workshop and the conference will provide opportunities for the students to listen to and meet international scholars in the field. The final schedule for the pre-conference workshop will be set once the list of participants for the conference is available: the aim is to invite a few scholars from the conference to give a lecture and/or literature seminar, and to discuss the early drafts of the student’s papers.
6/3 2014, pm.
Introduction (Mattias Qviström)
Lecture: Space and translation: thinking landscapes relationally (Mattias Qviström)
Case: Challenging nature (Katarina Saltzman)
Seminar: Space in translation (Mattias Qviström, literature: Murdoch, Latour, Massey)
Social gathering in the evening
7/3 2014, am.
Lecture: Symmetry and agency. (Mattias Qviström)
Case: Graffiti and the making of public space (Emma Paulsson)
Seminar: Symmetry and agency (Mattias Qviström, literature: Callon, Latour)
3/4 2013, pm.
Lecture: Topology: network space, fluid space and fire (Mattias Kärrholm)
Seminar: Topology (Mattias Kärrholm & Mattias Qviström, literature: Law, De Laet & Mol, Kärrholm)
4/4 2013, am.
Lecture: Power (Richard Ek)
Seminar: Power (Richard Ek & Mattias Qviström, literature: Latour, etc.)
8/5 2014, pm.
Lecture: Portable landscapes: black boxes, boundary objects and mobile policies (Mattias Qviström)
Case: Landscape translations – Using ANT to study and assess strategic landscape projects (Anne Tietjen)
Seminar: Black boxes and boundary objects (Mattias Qviström, literature: Star & Bowker, Robbins, Qviström, etc.)
11/6 2014, ca 9 – 16.
Hybridity and history: urban and peri-urban studies (Greet De Block)
Depending on who are coming to the conference one or two more will be invited to give lectures and/or take part in the workshop. The lectures will discuss the concepts hybridity, assemblages and materiality.
Workshop (pm), introduced with oral presentations of the students on their projects. The lecturers, Mattias Qviström and Nik Luka will take part in the workshop.
12 – 13/6. Conference: Relational landscape studies of urbanization
(see www.landscapestudies.se for call for papers, schedule, etc.)
Seminar based on the papers of the student. (Mattias Qviström)
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Brenner, N., Madden, D., Wachsmuth, D. 2011. “Assemblage urbanism and the challenges of critical urban theory”, City, 15, 225 – 240.
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De Block, G. 2011. Engineering the territory: technology, space and society in 19th and 20th century Belgium. Katholeike Universiteit Leuven.
De Laet, M., Mol, A. 2000. ”The Zimbabwe bush pump: mechanics of a fluid technology”, Social Studies of Science, 30, 225 – 263.
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McCann, E. 2011. “Veritable inventions: cities, policies and assemblage”, Area, 43, 143 – 147.
McCann, E., Ward, K. 2010. “Relationality/territoriality: toward a conceptualization of cities in the world”, Geoforum, 41, 175 – 184.
Merriman, P., Revill, G., Cresswell, T., Lorimer, H., Matless, D., Rose, G., Wylie, J. 2008. “Landscape, mobility, practice”, Social & cultural geography, 9, 191 – 212.
Metzger, J. 2013. “Raising the Regional Leviathan: A Relational-Materialist Conceptualization of Regions-in-Becoming as Publics-in-Stabilization”, International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, 37, 1368 – 1395.
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Qviström M. 2012. “Network ruins and green structure development: an attempt to trace relational spaces of a railway ruin”, Landscape research, 37, 257 – 275.
Qviström, M. 2013. “Landscapes with a heartbeat: tracing a portable landscape for jogging in Sweden (1958 – 1971)”, Environment and planning A, 45, 312 – 328.
Robbins, P. 2001. “Fixed categories in a portable landscape: the causes and consequences of land-cover categorization”, Environment and planning A
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Wylie, J. 2007. Landscape. Routledge.
© Mattias Qviström, 2013
Last update: 22 December 2013