by Subject: General Geography
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Transforming Place in a Unified Germany
A benchmark study in the changing field of urban anthropology, Berlin, Alexanderplatz is an ethnographic examination of the rapid transformation of the unified Berlin. Through a captivating account of the controversy around this symbolic public square in East Berlin, the book raises acute questions about expertise, citizenship, government and belonging. Based on ethnographic fieldwork in the city administration bureaus, developers’ offices, citizen groups and in Alexanderplatz itself, the author advances a richly innovative analysis of the multiplicity of place. She reveals how Alexanderplatz is assembled through the encounters between planners, citizen activists, social workers, artists and ordinary Berliners, in processes of popular participation and personal narratives, in plans, timetables, documents and files, and in the distribution of pipes, tram tracks and street lights. Alexanderplatz emerges as a socialist spatial exemplar, a ‘future’ under construction, an object of grievance, and a vision of robust public space. This book is both a critical contribution to the anthropology of contemporary modernity and a radical intervention in current cross-disciplinary debates on the city.
Concepts and Intersections
Schimanski, J. & Wolfe, S. F. (eds)
Few concepts are as central to understanding the modern world as borders, and the now-thriving field of border studies has already produced a substantial literature analyzing their legal, ideological, geographical, and historical aspects. Such studies have hardly exhausted the subject’s conceptual fertility, however, as this pioneering collection on the aesthetics of borders demonstrates. Organized around six key ideas—ecology, imaginary, in/visibility, palimpsest, sovereignty and waiting—the interlocking essays collected here provide theoretical starting points for an aesthetic understanding of borders, developed in detail through interdisciplinary analyses of literature, audio-visual borderscapes, historical and contemporary ecologies, political culture, and migration.
Changing Identifications and Alliances in North-east Africa
Volume I: Ethiopia and Kenya
Schlee, G. & Watson, E. E. (eds)
Forms of group identity play a prominent role in everyday lives and politics in northeast Africa. Case studies from Sudan, Ethiopia, Uganda, and Kenya illustrate the way that identities are formed and change over time, and how local, national, and international politics are interwoven. Specific attention is paid to the impact of modern weaponry, new technologies, religious conversion, food and land shortages, international borders, civil war, and displacement on group identities. Drawing on the expertise of anthropologists, historians and geographers, these volumes provide a significant account of a society profoundly shaped by identity politics and contribute to a better understanding of the nature of conflict and war, and forms of alliance and peacemaking, thus providing a comprehensive portrait of this troubled region.
Changing Identifications and Alliances in North-east Africa
Volume II: Sudan, Uganda, and the Ethiopia-Sudan Borderlands
Schlee, G. & Watson, E. E. (eds)
Forms of group identity play a prominent role in everyday lives and politics in north-east Africa. These volumes provide an interdisciplinary account of the nature and significance of ethnic, religious, and national identity in north-east Africa. Case studies from Sudan, Ethiopia, Uganda, and Kenya illustrate the way that identities are formed and change over time, and how local, national, and international politics are interwoven. Specific attention is paid to the impact of modern weaponry, new technologies, religious conversion, food and land shortages, international borders, civil war, and displacement on group identities. Drawing on the expertise of anthropologists, historians and geographers, these volumes provide a significant account of a society profoundly shaped by identity politics and contribute to a better understanding of the nature of conflict and war, and forms of alliance and peacemaking, thus providing a comprehensive portrait of this troubled region.
'City of the Future'
Built Space, Modernity and Urban Change in Astana
Astana, the capital city of the post-Soviet Kazakhstan, has often been admired for the design and planning of its futuristic cityscape. This anthropological study of the development of the city focuses on every-day practices, official ideologies and representations alongside the memories and dreams of the city’s longstanding residents and recent migrants. Critically examining a range of approaches to place and space in anthropology, geography and other disciplines, the book argues for an understanding of space as inextricably material-and-imaginary, and unceasingly dynamic – allowing for a plurality of incompatible pasts and futures materialized in spatial form.
National Parks in Global Historical Perspective
Gissibl B., Höhler, S. & Kupper, P. (eds)
National parks are one of the most important and successful institutions in global environmentalism. Since their first designation in the United States in the 1860s and 1870s they have become a global phenomenon. The development of these ecological and political systems cannot be understood as a simple reaction to mounting environmental problems, nor can it be explained by the spread of environmental sensibilities. Shifting the focus from the usual emphasis on national parks in the United States, this volume adopts an historical and transnational perspective on the global geography of protected areas and its changes over time. It focuses especially on the actors, networks, mechanisms, arenas, and institutions responsible for the global spread of the national park and the associated utilization and mobilization of asymmetrical relationships of power and knowledge, contributing to scholarly discussions of globalization and the emergence of global environmental institutions and governance.
Eastern Europe Unmapped
Beyond Borders and Peripheries
Kacandes, I. & Komska, Y. (eds)
Arguably more than any other region, the area known as Eastern Europe has been defined by its location on the map. Yet its inhabitants, from statesmen to literati and from cultural-economic elites to the poorest emigrants, have consistently forged or fathomed links to distant lands, populations, and intellectual traditions. Through a series of inventive cultural and historical explorations, Eastern Europe Unmapped dispenses with scholars’ long-time preoccupation with national and regional borders, instead raising provocative questions about the area’s non-contiguous—and frequently global or extraterritorial—entanglements.
Ice and Snow in the Cold War
Histories of Extreme Climatic Environments
Herzberg, J., Kehr, C., & Torma, F. (eds)
The history of the Cold War has focused overwhelmingly on statecraft and military power, an approach that has naturally placed Moscow and Washington center stage. Meanwhile, regions such as Alaska, the polar landscapes, and the cold areas of the Soviet periphery have received little attention. However, such environments were of no small importance during the Cold War: in addition to their symbolic significance, they also had direct implications for everything from military strategy to natural resource management. Through histories of these extremely cold environments, this volume makes a novel intervention in Cold War historiography, one whose global and transnational approach undermines the simple opposition of “East” and “West.”
Changing Perspectives on Resilience and Resistance
Dousset, L. & Nayral, M. (eds)
Throughout the Pacific region, people are faced with dramatic changes, often described as processes of “glocalization”; individuals and groups espouse multilayered forms of identity, in which global modes of thinking and doing are embedded in renewed perceptions of local or regional specificities. Consequently, new forms of resistance and resilience – the processes by which communities attempt to regain their original social, political, and economic status and structure after disruption or displacement – emerge. Through case studies from across the Pacific which transcend the conventional “local-global” dichotomy, this volume aims to explore these complex and interwoven phenomena from a new perspective.
When Things Become Property
Land Reform, Authority and Value in Postsocialist Europe and Asia
Sikor, T., Dorondel, S., Stahl, J. & Xuan To, P.
Governments have conferred ownership titles to many citizens throughout the world in an effort to turn things into property. Almost all elements of nature have become the target of property laws, from the classic preoccupation with land to more ephemeral material, such as air and genetic resources. When Things Become Property interrogates the mixed outcomes of conferring ownership by examining postsocialist land and forest reforms in Albania, Romania and Vietnam, and finds that property reforms are no longer, if they ever were, miracle tools available to governments for refashioning economies, politics or environments.
Subjects: General Anthropology General Geography