Mapping the Subject: Geographies of Cultural Transformation

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Steve Pile, Nigel Thrift
Taylor & Francis, Aug 3, 1992 - Science - 432 pages
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Rejecting static and reductionist understandings of subjectivity, this book asks how people find their place in the world. Mapping the Subject is an inter-disciplinary exploration of subjectivity, which focuses on the importance of space in the constitution of acting, thinking, feeling individuals.
The authors develop their arguments through detailed case studies and clear theoretical expositions. Themes discussed are organised into four parts: constructing the subject, sexuality and subjectivity, the limits of identity, and the politics of the subject.
There is, here, a commitment to mapping the subject - a subject which is in some ways fluid, in other ways fixed; which is located in constantly unfolding power, knowledge and social relationships. This book is, moreover, about new maps for the subject.

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About the author (1992)

My research is primarily concerned with the relationship between place and the politics of identity. For example, I have undertaken a series of investigations into the relationship between the city, everyday life and the spatial constitution of power. This work has found outlets in projects such as City A-Z and also a sole authored book, Real Cities: modernity, space and the phantasmagorias of city life. This book makes a case for taking seriously the more imaginary, fantasmatic and emotional aspects of urbanism. Drawing inspiration from the work of Walter Benjamin, Sigmund Freud, Georg Simmel and various psychogeographers, Real Cities explores the dream-like and ghost-like experiences of city life. A further strand of work has been to intervene in how Geography, as a Discipline, is conceived in terms of its practices, content and approaches. My main contribution has been to promote the legitimacy of a psychoanalytic approach to Geography, as first set out in The Body and the City. However, this project has also involved a more cultural take on Geography itself. This can be seen in both the Handbook of Cultural Geography and Patterned Ground. The work I am conducting over the next few years, however, focuses on the body. This project is tentatively titled Fantastic Bodies. It is expected that the final outcome will be a sole authored book.

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