2019, Thu, Sep 12

Refiguring Spaces #3: Topographies of Hope

With Cindi Katz and others

Image: Claudia Mock

Image: Claudia Mock

Are there connections between places that are entirely different? Can the effects of globalization or environmental destruction on geographically disparate places be compared with one another? Can topography put up resistance?

The cultural geographer Cindi Katz developed the method of “countertopography,” which offers a geographical imagination that is at once translocal and transnational. It can be used to analyze the common effects of processes such as climate change, but also dispossession, racialized violence or migration. It acknowledges the distinctness of place while recognizing that it is structurally connected to other places along “contour lines.” These lines do not represent elevation – as in traditional topographic maps – but particular relations between social processes. In her keynote, Cindi Katz will explore some of these “contour lines” that connect geographically disparate locations by means of categories such as nation or size, thus creating new spaces for hope and action.

Part of the summer school Spaces of Hope: Critical Perspective on Spatial (Trans)Formations of the TU Berlin’s Collaborative Research Centre Re-Figuration of Spaces at Haus der Kulturen der Welt