Workshop 3: 1968, Space, Politics, and Radical Geography

Workshop 3, “1968, Space, Politics, and Radical Geography”
Tuesday, May 22nd, 2018, 10am-3pm, Lunch 12-1pm
River Room, King’s Building, King’s College London, Strand campus, London WC2R 2LS

Convener Alex Loftus, Department of Geography, with guest Professor Mustafa Dikec, École d’urbanisme Paris

With reference to the legacies of 1968, this workshop will explore the relationship between space and politics. We will consider how both space and politics have been theorised since 1968 and how that conceptualisation opens up new ways of considering the politics of urban social movements. While geographers and urban theorists have engaged directly with Paris, 1968 through Lefebvre’s Urban Revolution, along with Situationist writings and artworks from Debord, Vaneigem and Constant, the long-1968 was also crucial to the emergence of radical geographical thought and practice seen in works such as William Bunge’s Fitzgerald and Harvey’s Social Justice and the City. In recent years, the question of politics has been foregrounded more in theorizing the relation between space and politics, which implies the need for a new set of conceptual resources that may or may not fit so conveniently with those drawn on in the past. While drawing in particular on Dikeç’s reading of Jacques Rancière, this workshop will seek to consider the relation between space and politics alongside other key thinkers in radical geography and critical urbanism.

Specific questions to consider will include:

* What might it mean for both critical urbanism and for interpretations of 1968 to “place politics at the heart of radical urban political theory”

* How might critical urbanists integrate an understanding of politics into their interpretations of urban insurrections?

* In what ways does Rancière’s understanding of politics provide a challenge to earlier ways of interpreting “the urban political”?


Suggested preparatory reading:

Dikeç, M., 2005. Space, politics, and the political. Environment and Planning D: Society and Space, 23(2), pp.171-188

Dikeç, M. and Swyngedouw, E., 2017. Theorizing the politicizing city. International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, 41(1), pp.1-18.

Rancière, J. 2001, Ten Theses on Politics. Theory and Event 5:3.