This paper builds from scholarship on whiteness and white privilege to argue for an expanded focus that includes settler colonialism and white supremacy. We argue that engaging with white supremacy and settler colonialism reveals the enduring social, economic, and political impacts of white supremacy as a materially grounded set of practices. We situate white supremacy not as an artifact of history or as an extreme position, but rather as the foundation for the continuous unfolding of practices of race and racism within settler states. We illustrate this framework through a recent example of a land dispute in the American West.
Claims about neoliberalism and its geographies frequently involve assumptions about the affective life of neoliberalism and/or neoliberal societies. However, existing cultural approaches to neoliberalism as a discursive formation, an ideology or governmentality collapse a concern with affect into a focus on the operation of signifying-subjectfying processes that make ‘neoliberal subjects’. Political economy approaches only make implicit claims about the ‘mood’ of neoliberal societies. In this paper, I argue that collective affects are part of the conditions of formation for particular neoliberalisms and therefore understanding the affective life of neoliberalism is critical to explaining how it emerges, forms and changes. Through examples including The Mont Pelerin Society, the Chicago School of Economics and Thatcherism, I propose a vocabulary that supplements existing approaches by focusing on the affective conditions for neoliberalism, specifically the atmospheres that are part of the formation of neoliberal reason and the structures of feeling that condition how particular neoliberalisms actualize in the midst of other things. The result is a way of discerning neoliberalisms as both conditioned by affects and ‘actually existing’ affectively – as dispersed affective ‘qualities’ or ‘senses’.
Environmental justice (EJ) scholarship is increasingly framing justice in terms of capabilities. This paper argues that capabilities are fundamentally about well-being and as such there is a need to more explicitly theorize well-being. We explore how capabilities have come to be influential in EJ and how well-being has been approached so far in EJ specifically and human geography more broadly. We then introduce a body of literature from social psychology which has grappled theoretically with questions about well-being, using the insights we gain from it to reflect on some possible trajectories and challenges for EJ as it engages with well-being.
Glaciers are key icons of climate change and global environmental change. However, the relationships among gender, science, and glaciers – particularly related to epistemological questions about the production of glaciological knowledge – remain understudied. This paper thus proposes a feminist glaciology framework with four key components: 1) knowledge producers; (2) gendered science and knowledge; (3) systems of scientific domination; and (4) alternative representations of glaciers. Merging feminist postcolonial science studies and feminist political ecology, the feminist glaciology framework generates robust analysis of gender, power, and epistemologies in dynamic social-ecological systems, thereby leading to more just and equitable science and human-ice interactions.
The construction of ‘fictive place’ is ever more common in capitalist production and exchange. It could be argued that the adoption of Geographical Indications (GIs) is a form of resistance to the homogenizing effects of globalization. In some ways fictive place-making can be seen as a means of adding value to land; however, we argue that fictive place has become a factor of production in its own right. We investigate this through a discussion of fictitious capital and the rise of GIs. We draw evidence from the wine sector and suggest that other networks are increasingly constituted of similar processes.
This paper focuses on the geographical notion of chora, i.e. the earth as ethically shaped by human practices, according to my interpretation of Strabo’s Geography. I argue that this chora is bearer of a logic of the included third/middle, as it coincides with the logico-semantic third way of Plato’s notion of image. Re-interpreting today’s geographical turns in the light of a re-turn to Strabo’s chora/image, I argue that this return is moral, inasmuch as the geographical chora shows that ethics has preserved a logic of image and representation, which is the most ancient in Western thought, but also the most appropriate to contemporary issues. The geographical model of chora which I delineate here – a complex model on the basis of which ethics works in the same way as an image – is also the attempt to propose an alternative theory on the nature of image as well as an alternative interpretation of the role which ethics can play in current debate.
In this second report, I consider the relationship between emotion and morality from a geographical perspective. Though traditional and contemporary engagements in moral philosophy and psychology offer a diverse range of theories and approaches to emotions and morality, few of these explicitly consider or incorporate the role of space. I consider theories of embodiment and relationality as one means through which emotions become collective and institutionalized, with a focus on emotional geographies and care. I conclude by reflecting on political emotions as conflictive but insightful signals of societal shifts in our moral emotions, and suggest that incorporating emotions may also provide a different way of thinking about the problem of distant care.
Attention to the urban and metropolitan growth of nature can no longer be denied. Nor can the intense scrutiny of racialized, postcolonial and indigenous perspectives on the press and pulse of uneven development across the planet’s urban political ecology be deferred any longer. There is sufficient research ranging across antiracist and postcolonial perspectives to constitute a need to discuss what is referred to here as ‘abolition ecology’. Abolition ecology represents an approach to studying urban natures more informed by antiracist, postcolonial and indigenous theory. The goal of abolition ecology is to elucidate and extrapolate the interconnected white supremacist and racialized processes that lead to uneven develop within urban environments.
This report examines how social geographers are engaging with the questions that robots and robotic technologies provoke. First, it discusses Marxist analyses of machines and troubles the role that robots play in social production and reproduction. Second, robots as actors in assemblages of sociospatial relations are interrogated for their role in state violence. Third, the dynamic change brought about by smart cities and their algorithmic subjects is discussed. The concluding section is speculative, discussing robots and the ethics of care. This report asks social geographers to reimagine their social geographies in relation to the role of robots in everyday life.