For Joyful Geography

Decry the State!

Path to the Possible

I was just at the 10th Annual Critical Geographies Mini-Conference, which was held in Portland and hosted by the Toulan School of Urban Studies and Planning and the Department of Geography at Portland State University. The organizers did a fantastic job, and there was lots of great conversation.

I did, however, have an overall worry about the state of critical geography, one that for me seems to be located in the term ‘critical’.  There was a lot of talk about what it means to be critical, and everyone seemed to agree that being critical is a good thing.  I wonder.  There was consensus that it is important to be critical of received wisdom, and particularly when that wisdom assumes oppressive or exploitative relations. And I agree. But, still, for fairly long stretches of the conference, it seemed that the only key we were able to sing in was the key of…

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