A Place More Void takes its name from a scene in William Shakespeare’s The Tragedy of Julius Caesar, wherein an elderly soothsayer has a final chance to warn Caesar about the Ides of March. Worried that he won’t be able to deliver his message because of the crowded alleyways, the soothsayer devises a plan to find and intercept Caesar in “a place more void.” It is precisely such an elusive place that this volume makes space for by theorizing and empirically exploring the many yet widely neglected ways in which the void permeates geographical thinking.
This collection presents geography’s most in-depth and sustained engagements with the void to date, demonstrating the extent to which related themes such as gaps, cracks, lacks, and emptiness perforate geography’s fundamental concepts, practices, and passions. Arranged in four parts around the themes of Holes, Absences, Edges, and Voids, the contributions demonstrate the fecundity of the void for thinking across a wide range of phenomena: from archives to alien abductions, caves to cryptids, and vortexes to vanishing points.
A Place More Void gathers established and emerging scholars who engage a wide range of geographical issues and who express themselves not only through archival, literary, and socio-scientific investigations, but also through social and spatial theory, political manifesto, poetry, and performance art.
List of Illustrations Acknowledgments
Introduction: Into the Void Paul Kingsbury and Anna J. Secor Part 1. Holes 1. Urban Renewal and the Actuality of Absence: The “Hole” (Trou) of Paris, 1973 Ulf Strohmayer 2. The Crack in the Earth: Environmentalism after Speleology Kai Bosworth 3. The Vortex and the Void: Meta/Geophysics in Sedona Keith Woodward and John Paul Jones III 4. Six Voids Flora Parrott and Harriet Hawkins Part 2. Absences 5. Tracking Silence: Place, Embodiment, and Politics Morgan Meyer 6. The Void and Its Summons: Subjectivity, Signs, and the Enigmatic Mitch Rose 7. Derwent’s Ghost: The Haunting Silences of Geography at Harvard Alison Mountz and Kira Williams 8. It Watches You Vanish: On Landscape and W. G. Sebald John Wylie Part 3. Edges 9. enfolding: An Experimental geographical imagination system (gis) Nick Lally and Luke Bergmann 10. Beyond the Feminine Void: Rethinking Sexuation through an Ettingerial Lens Carmen Antreasian 11. Politics for the Impasse Jess Linz and Anna J. Secor 12. Raising Sasquatch to the Place of the Cryptozoological Thing Oliver Keane and Paul Kingsbury Part 4. Voids 13. O(void): Excerpts from “Lot,” a Long Ethnopoetics Project about the Colonial Geographies of Haida Gwaii Sarah de Leeuw 14. Playing with Plenitude and Finitude: Attuning to a Mysterious Void of Being Mikko Joronen 15. In the Void of Formalization: The Homology between Surplus Value and Surplus Jouissance Ceren Özselçuk and Yahya M. Madra 16. Localizing the Void: From Material to Immaterial Materialism Lucas Pohl Coda: A Void More Placed Paul Kingsbury and Anna J. Secor
Paul Kingsbury is a professor of geography and associate dean of the Faculty of Environment at Simon Fraser University. He is the coeditor of Psychoanalytic Geographies and Soundscapes of Wellbeing in Popular Music. Anna J. Secor is a professor of geography at Durham University. She is the coeditor of The Wiley Blackwell Companion to Political Geography.
“In the current period of climatic and political uncertainty A Place More Void explores the generative capacities of the unknown through the lens of different conceptualizations of the void. I came away from the reading invigorated by the productive mobilizations of the concept and fully convinced of its potential to assist in understanding and moving forward in the current conjuncture.”—Susan M. Ruddick, professor of geography at the University of Toronto
“As a spatial concept the void—or a space that reflects a gap in place or time—is a curious yet compelling question to investigate in geographical research. A Place More Void is conceptually unique and definitely provides a step forward as a contribution in the discipline of geography.”—Nadia Bartolini, associate research fellow of geography at the University of Exeter