In Topoi/Graphein Christian Abrahamsson maps the paradoxical limit of the in-between to reveal that to be human is to know how to live with the difference between the known and the unknown. Using filmic case studies, including Code Inconnu, Lord of the Flies, and Apocalypse Now, and focusing on key concerns developed in the works of the philosophers Deleuze, Olsson, and Wittgenstein, Abrahamsson starts within the notion of fixed spatiality, in which human thought and action are anchored in the given of identity. He then moves through a social world in which spatiotemporal transformations are neither fixed nor taken for granted. Finally he edges into the pure temporality that lies beyond the maps of fixed points and social relations.
Each chapter is organized into two subjects: topoi, or excerpts from the films, and graphein, the author’s interpretation of presented theories to mirror the displacements, transpositions, juxtapositions, fluctuations, and transformations between delimited categories. A landmark work in the study of human geography, Abrahamsson’s book proposes that academic and intellectual attention should focus on the spatialization between meaning and its materialization in everyday life.
List of Illustrations Foreword: Born Again, by Gunnar Olsson Introduction: Angle of Power Part 1. Code inconnu/Crossroads Chapter 1. Encounter/Point Chapter 2. Wall/Stone Chapter 3. Code inconnu/When Above Chapter 4. Limits/Oedipus Chapter 5. Stranger/Terra Firma Part 2. Lord of the Flies/Passages Chapter 6. Desert/Line Chapter 7. Thing/Swerve Chapter 8. Lord of the Flies/Through Chapter 9. Division/Hermes Chapter 10. Fire/Terra Nullius Part 3. Apocalypse Now/The Event Chapter 11. Dream/Plane Chapter 12. River/Cloud Chapter 13. Apocalypse Now/In-Between Chapter 14. Darkness/Janus Chapter 15. Abyss/Horror Vacui Part 4. Geographein Epilogue Notes Bibliography Index
Christian Abrahamsson is an independent scholar in Sweden. He is the coeditor of GO: On the Geographies of Gunnar Olsson. Gunnar Olsson is a professor emeritus at the Uppsala University in Sweden. He is the author of Birds in Egg/Eggs in Bird, Lines of Power/Limits of Language, and Abysmal: A Critique of Cartographic Reason.
Gunnar Olsson is an internationally acclaimed and highly distinguished Swedish geographer. He is professor emeritus at the University of Uppsala in Sweden. Olsson is the author of Birds in Egg/Eggs in Bird, Lines of Power/Limits of Language, and Abysmal: A Critique of Cartographic Reason.
"Readers with an interest in spatial theory or cinematic geography should obviously appreciate this work, but so should anyone who wants to understand how a world falls apart and continues to fall apart."—Marcus A. Doel, Social and Cultural Geography
“Topoi/Graphein poses the most profound philosophical and conceptual questions concerning the human condition from a compelling geographical perspective. A sustained meditation on our engagement with the world, it journeys over remarkably wide-ranging territory, delivering valuable insights with an uncommon intensity of thought. This is a heavyweight work that wears its profundity lightly.”—David B. Clarke, professor of human geography and head of the Department of Geography at Swansea University
“Generations of scholars have identified their respective positions with reference to landmark propositions emanating from singular publications. Topoi/Graphein holds the promise of becoming such a book for a coming generation. It tackles its subject matter with considerable verve and elegant style.”—Ulf Strohmayer, professor of geography at the National University of Ireland, Galway