From Jonathan Murdoch – Post-Structuralist Geography: A Guide to Relational Space

8 February, 2018 - Uncategorized

“Limits to representation derive ultimately from ‘our’ embodiment in space (and time). Following recognition of embodiment, and the multiplicity of relations that connect humans both to given spaces and to other humans, we need to admit that there are ‘numerous perspectives on, and metaphors of, what counts as knowledge, or more accurately knowledges.’ Thrift therefore follows Donna Haraway in arguing that knowledge is always ‘situated’. The situatedness of knowledge carries certain important implications for geographical theory:

  1. ┬áConcepts must be seen as ‘indefinite’ — that is, they are open and fluid, their main purpose is not to ‘represent’ but to ‘resonate’ (Thrift,1999:304).
  2. Knowledge is always contextualized, it is always located in space, notably in an embodied, material space. Moreover, context is ‘performative’, it is ‘a plural event which is more or less spatially extensive and more or less temporally specific’ (Thrift, 1996:41).
  3. Theory is not oriented to the apprehension of (a single) truth but is ‘a practical means of going on’ (Thrift, 1996:304); it is a way of engaging with the world that recognizes its own contextual limitations (in this sense, it encourages the theorist to engage in ‘reflexivity’ — that is, a reflection on his or her situatedness).
  4. Non-representational theory promotes ‘relational rather than representational understandings’ (Thrift, 1996:304) because embodied subjects are necessarily involved in multiple encounters and interactions . The theory thus emphasizes the ‘flow of practice in everyday life’ and the ‘on-going creation of effects through encounters’ rather than ‘consciously planned codings and symbols’. The ‘everyday is therefore seen as a set of skills which are highly performative’ (Thrift and Dewsbury, 2000:415).”

[Let it also be noted that spell check does not consider “knowledges” to be a word]

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