Key Concepts in Geography | 𝗥𝗲𝗾𝘂𝗲𝘀𝘁 𝗣𝗗𝗙 on ResearchGate | On Jan 1, , N.J. Clifford and others published Key Concepts in Geography. "This book clearly outlines key concepts that all geographers should readily be able to explain. It does so in a highly accessible way. It is likely to be a text that. Including ten new chapters on nature, globalization, development, and risk and a new section on practicing geography, this is a completely revised and updated.
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The Second Edition of Key Concepts in Geography explains the key terms? space, time, place, scale, landscape - that define the language of. KEY CONCEPTS IN URBAN GEOGRAPHY The Key Concepts in Human Geography series is intended to provide a set of companion texts for the core fields of. Key Concepts in Geography defines the key terms - space, time, place, scale, landscape - that inform the language of geography and define the geographical.
May 1, Dr Mark Holton.
School of Geography, University of Plymouth. April 20, Dr Erdem Bekaroglu. Geography, Ankara University. December 11, Dr Karen Parkhill.
October 10, Dr Elias Symeonakis. June 14, Mr Owen Lewis.
May 2, Mr Ritienne Gauci. Department of Geography, University of Malta. April 9, Mr Ian Harris. November 6, Professor Ann Laudati. Yet it has often been boxed off, left to those with an interest in port systems, road pricing or rail travel.
The dynamic between the logics of centrality and mobility then forms the backdrop to the discussion of global cities. This is a field of study Introduction that has boomed over the last two decades and has been an inevitable partner of the vast literature on globalisation in all its forms and conceptual shapes. This body of work has been driven primarily by cases and theories derived from economic geography, and sees cities as being defined by their ability to hold down circuits of wealth, employment and capital.
There is a subtle difference in perspective here with the literature on transnational urbanism, which has emerged as the study of flows of ideas, practices, peoples and commodities between and within contemporary urban centres.
The human flows that move between cities — either as tourists or migrant workers, either temporarily moving or going from one sedentary life to another — have tended to be defined in contrast to globalisation, allowing a tracing of how particular ethnic groups organise themselves across established national boundaries. They can be highly visible — Chinatowns being a classic example — or they can be largely hidden from mainstream society, as many migrant groups seek to establish and embed themselves through independent means.
We begin by considering the relationship between cities and nature, and how the urban environment is not necessarily unnatural, but is better understood as a kind of hybrid of the natural and social. The discussion cuts across a range of themes that have been exciting theorists, such as urban political ecology Keil, ; Wolch, and animals in cities Wolch, The relationship between human actors and nature has been an important new field of study in human geography e.
Theorists have become interested in the diverse materiality through which social practice comes into being. So, they are not just interested in people and language, but also the complex networks of bodies, objects, technologies and imaginaries through which urban space is constituted.
This has been a key aspect of recent debates concerning urban infrastructure, which seeks to explain the socio-technical constitution of the bits and pieces of urban systems such as cables, power supplies and satellite that help urban society stick together. These mechanisms shape the experience of urban life, but are often 9 Introduction hidden literally and metaphorically from our attention.
And it has also invigorated debates in the field of architecture, both in terms of the networks of relations that come together to make a building happen and also through an understanding of how buildings are used, both in the everyday sense of home and housing and in ceremonial, identitymarking institutions such as state parliaments or museums.
These geographers were accused of having overlooked the social and political dimensions of the urban forms that they studied, or even excluded an interest in human experience. By seeing human actors as driven by neo-classical presupposition of strict economic rationality and, further, by suggesting that the only dimensions of human action that could be studied scientifically were those that could be rigorously measured, quantitative urban geography was blind to what it is that makes humans human.
Emotion, memory, our ability to form meaningful attachments with each other, our capacity for wonder, all had no place in quantitative urban geography.
A key issue, however, was an unwillingness to accept that how they envisioned the urban was a very loaded decision. They pointed out not only that women and indeed children experienced urban space in very different ways to men, but also that urban space was gendered in all sorts of complicated and rarely acknowledged ways see Ley and Samuels, ; Ley, ; Women and Geography Study Group of the IBG, ; Rose, In her book Visual Methodologies , Gillian Rose set out a comprehensive framework for thinking through how visual methods used by social scientists could unveil some of these experiences.
Introduction These literatures underpinned the message that cities are more than physical structures: they are also sites of meaning and experience. Theorists such as Schivelbusch and Schwarzer have argued that visuality is central to the modern urban experience: Panoramic vision turns the view of the city into a sequence of disembod ied and abstracted forms. Schivelbusch realizes that since rail passengers perceive specific objects poorly, they tend not to look closely or carefully.
Speed anaesthetizes vision. Sight becomes absentminded. A new type of building is seen.
This is not the building carefully designed by the architect, but instead a building interconnected with other buildings, other objects, and other images in the mind. Schwarzer, 54 Railway or car journeys are thus interesting ways of thinking through how the urban is constituted, as it suggests that many urban dwellers switch into absent-mindedness when travelling through complex urban landscapes.
Moreover, they are often dominated by complex forms of visuality in how we make sense of urban space, most frequently expressed through the medium of photography, which has been important in the rise of cinematic productions and still images alike. To consider this further, the next entry explores the importance of the body as an important site of research in itself, not least given the growing obsession with physical appearance, body shape and fashion, which have all been important sectors in the contemporary western economy.
We then focus on how urban experience can be understood via the concept of virtuality, not just in terms of the digital, but in terms of an experience that points to an imaginative and future-oriented sense of 11 Introduction experience.
Finally, we consider a concept — surveillance — that allows us to get a handle on how various forms of governance infiltrate many of the most everyday of urban practices and routines. The increasing sophistication of camera technology has allowed public spaces to be increasingly monitored visually. Yet surveillance means much more than this, as corporations seek to scan consumer behaviour in the search for greater market sensitivity, governments construct databases to watch over who is part of the national community and the military adopts cartographic techniques in order to enhance their operations often against civilian targets.
As with the humanistic and feminist critiques of quantitative urban geography, the emergence of a Marxian or political economic urban geography brought with it a whole host of new thinkers, and intellectual traditions.
Marxian geographers were inspired not by established geographers such as Halford Mackinder and Walter Christaller, but to Engels with his writings on Victorian Manchester, Lenin and Luxemburg with their writings on the geographical expansion and intensification of capitalism, Lefebvre with his theses about the urbanisation of capitalism, and Marx himself.
Marxian urban geography was also concerned with an entirely new set of research themes trade unions, political activists, ideological fields, the dynamics of capitalist accumulation and a whole new range of empirical concerns, not least of which was understanding how the economic structures of a city were intertwined with its political institutions.
In , David Harvey published Social Justice and the City, now seen as a turning point in the use of Marxian concepts in urban geography. Starting out as a politically liberal meditation on the relationship between cities and social justice, Harvey came to the conclusion that liberal — that is to say mainstream — social science was incapable of understanding the underlying causes of the many inequalities and social injustices that structured the experience of the modern city.
His arguments inspired a Introduction wide range of social geographic research. This is not to deny the significance of quantitative, statistical measures of segregation as captured by census data and other socio-economic surveys, but rather to take a more reflective, integrated approach to considering the categorisation of such data. Since the journal Antipode had been publishing Marxian inspired along with feminist and other critiques of quantitative geography.
But Social Justice and the City acted as a catalyst in redefining what a radical urban geography would be about — not least because it asserted, first, that geography was absolutely central to the dynamics of the capitalist system and, second, that cities in particular were key sites for the realisation of surplus value — that they were money-machines.
In the following years, a multitude of geographical scholars have extended the scope of Marxian urban geography. Indeed, if quantitative geography defined the dominant intellectual trajectory within urban geography from the mids into the s, political, economic and Marxian approaches dominated urban geography through much of the s and early s and helped shape the dominant concepts used in explaining the form of urban politics.
However, Marxian geography was but one of a series of streams that entered urban geography via sociology.
An important theme of urban studies throughout the twentieth century has been that of community. Again, Marxian thinkers have been influential 13 Introduction 14 here, particularly those of the Frankfurt School, associated with the writings of Theodore Adorno and Max Horkheimer. Such work tended to ignore the desire of audiences to actively choose the consumer goods and entertainment choices that would make up their own modes of urbanised living.
Recent work in geography, sociology, anthropology and media studies has tackled this issue head-on, particularly in terms of the sites of consumption in cities, from the spectacular to the mundane. An understanding of the media is important in terms of making sense of how cities are represented, and in the ways in which the urban is produced, distributed and consumed.
This is an emerging area of urban studies, not one that geographers have contributed a whole lot to.
Yet in media studies and sociology, attempts are being made to conceptualise how media is at the same time a material practice revolving around television studios, production companies and satellite infrastructure , a textual representation in terms of its distribution of symbolic collections of words and images that are packaged, sold and consumed , and a relational process, in that places are linked together by media practices.
The entry on public space described some of the debates around everyday life in cities, particularly the apparent decline of political expression in public. It is suggested that — contrary to the orthodox view of there being a decline in sociality in cities — there are many new and vibrant forms of urban sociality.
Being seen in public is an important aspect of this, and multiple publics often seek out symbolic sites of commemoration or collective identity to express particular world-views. Our final entry concerns the places and practices of commemoration within urban space, given their importance both as a form of representation of a particularly admired historical figure, a source of contest and conflict as was the case in post East and Central Europe or as a focus of collective or individual displays of grief, anger or joy.
Just as metropolitan city-regions developed in the post-war period in ways unrecognisable from the early industrial city, so urban geography developed as a discipline Wheeler, In its earliest manifestations, such as the Central Place Theory of Walter Christaller, or the concentric-zonal, sectoral and multiple nuclei models of Ernest Burgess, Homer Hoyt and Harris and Ullman respectively, who each argued that cities had a discernible internal structure, see figures 1.
The power of most cities has tended to emerge due to locational advantage of some sort. From the simplest forms of exchange, when peasant farmers literally brought their produce from the fields into the densest point of interaction — giving us market towns — the significance of central places to surrounding territories began to be asserted. As cities grew in complexity, the major civic institutions, from seats of government to religious buildings, would also come to dominate these points of convergence.
These manifestations of bustling centrality appeared to obey a gravitational pull. In certain extreme cases, such as Madrid and Brasilia, new capital cities were located at the central point of national territory for the most rational form of centralised governance. Nonetheless, for most modern cities the exemplar of centrality is its central business district.
Groups of landowners began to tussle over building heights, subways and streetcars from the earliest periods of the modern city. Business groups have long been aware of the reduced transaction costs involved in concentrating business activities, most notably the minimisation of travel time when moving between clients.
By the late nineteenth century, technological change had hastened the development of skyscrapers in business districts, much to the chagrin of those sections of the middle classes whose views were obscured by the new high-rises, as well as existing landowners whose property values were undermined by the sudden onslaught of new built space. Within the CBD there are diversities which are revealed by the distinctive functional 1 Location and Movement districts and by the individual locational qualities of specific functions … The retail trade quarter is often referred to as the node and is usually on the most central space; the office quarter is well marked and may have sub sections such as financial or legal districts.
Besides these horizontal divisions, there are distinctive vertical variations in the distribution of functions; the ground floors of multi storey buildings are occupied by activities with the greatest centrality needs. Herbert, 90 However, with increased dispersal and stretching out of economic relations, renting or owning an office or shop in the historically central location began to decline in importance.
They are the 'big ideas' that can be applied across the subject to identify a question, guide an investigation, organise information, suggest an explanation or assist decision making. They are also the concepts central to a discipline that increasingly engages with the humanities as well as with the physical and social sciences.
Fifty years ago geographers approached the discipline through four traditions — spatial, area studies, earth sciences and people-environment interactions. Forty years ago they viewed the subject through six intersecting paradigms — spatial organisation, spatial diffusion, landscape, ecosystem, regional studies, and environmental perception. Today, the core of geography is expressed through its key concepts, and the seven listed above have now been identified as central to the study of geography in Australian schools.
This approach is consistent with that adopted elsewhere. New Zealand education authorities, for example, list seven concepts in senior secondary education, the United States of America identifies six 'essential elements' and the United Kingdom has seven key concepts. The Institute of Australian Geographers identifies three complementary concepts: place space. Recommended readings: The key concepts or big ideas in geography.
The New Zealand Ministry of Education provides details about their model of geographical concepts. Six 'essential elements'.