Call for Panelists: Potential Spaces / Spaces of Potential: Between nowhere and now here
November 21 – 23, 2019 in Boston
62nd Annual Meeting of the ASA
BEING, BELONGING AND BECOMING IN AFRICA
POTENTIAL SPACES/SPACES OF POTENTIAL: BETWEEN NOWHERE AND NOW HERE.
Possibilities are elusive, intangible and yet, people grasp and create them. People make possibilities available in interaction with concrete space and its materiality. Squares, street corners, or roads contain possibilities for social, political and economic practices. Theaters, town halls, markets, abandoned buildings, or ruins are not fixed places, but concrete manifestations of possibilities for becoming. This panel explores the notion of potential by looking at the relationship between space and practice. More specifically, it looks at “sites of emergence“ (Kapferer 2010) and the becoming (Deleuze and Guattari 1988) of spaces, which connect and disrupt people’s everyday lives in African cities.
Spaces are constituted by people doing things - both on an everyday basis and beyond. They transform open spaces from ''nowhere'' to ''now here'' as new relations, trajectories, identities, and histories emerge. Thereby, the boundaries of spaces become ephemeral, they are ascertained, shifted, contested, stabilized, and reaffirmed. We seek to conceptualize space with regard to potential and find methodologies that account for the potential of spaces in which histories, relations and identities are created.
We are looking forward to empirical contributions addressing question like:
- What are the possibilities and practices that emerge out of and constitute (extra)ordinary spaces?
- What demarcates a place? How are boundaries ascertained, shifted, contested, stabilized, reaffirmed?
- What does it take for a space to have potential – to whom and for which kind of practice?
- How do people use and create potential as they navigate possibilities and constraints set by certain spaces?
- What are the preconditions for place-making? What are the (infra)structures that allow for place making and (shifting) belongings in Africa?
- Who appropriates certain spaces? How? And how does this change?
Interested researchers are invited to submit an abstract of 250 words to firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com by March 12th 2019.
Julia Büchele, University of Basel, Switzerland.
Susann Ludwig, University of Leipzig, Germany.