Researching Space (Lecture Notes)

  • How we research space?
  • Space structures our experiences of the world around us.
  • Its (not ) just common sense….
  • We need to understand global power structures that position individuala with varying levels of power
  • We must acknowledge our biases because it is impossible to consider space without examining our own position within it.
  • We need self-reflexivity to understand the discourses that dominate our own ‘common sense’
  • Manuel Castells –The information society
  • ‘To give an overview of Castells’s trilogy, in a nutshell, it argues tat the global space has increasingly been split into the ‘space of flows’ (or the sphere of the net) and the ‘space of places’ (or the sphere of the self).’(Saukko,.p157)
  • Macro sociological – looks at both society and economy
  • Materialist- ‘facts’ of life
  • Edward Soja-Critical Geographer
  • Space has 3 dimensions
  • -First space: material ‘realities’ that structure space
  • -Second Space: representations and discourses surrounding space that shape our perceptions of certain spaces
  • -Third space: both the material ‘realities’ and the discourse jointly contributing to the construction of space in both material and imaginary terms (lived experience/from below).
  • Implications for method…
  • Multidimensional
  • Context
  • Discourse/Representation
  • Lived experience
  • ‘Soja’s Thirdspace.. calls for a mode of inquiry that examines, or at least keeps in mind, the different dimensions of space or social reality.
  • While the lived, discursive and contextual aspects of space and reality can be studied in separation, both analytically and empirically, they intertwine with one another.” (Saukko,3003 p.166)
  • Map vs Networks
  • Saukko
  • We are spatially located
  • ‘the researching self’ is a spatially located self and every moment of the research process is inflected by this fact. Such locatedness will influence the kinds of questions asked, texts drawn on and, most importantly, forms of cultural knowledge that are available ‘ (Johnson et al., 2004 p.105)
  • Cartography/Mapping
  • How do we map something?
  • It depends what the map is for…
  • -to direct people
  • -to inform people
  • -to impart ideas
  • -to provides a representation

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