Unearthing feminist territories and terrains

Anna Jackman, Rachael Squire, Johanne Bruun, Philippa Thornton

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The constructs of ‘territory’ and ‘terrain’ are the subject of increasing scrutiny within political geography. While momentum builds in their interrogation as both diverse and lively practices, and complex political technologies, this article takes pause. Drawing on a rich and diverse range of feminist scholarship, it seeks to reflect upon existing trajectories and provide provocation for further accounting. Inspired throughout by, and seeking to bring to bear, a feminist perspective on territory and terrain, this article follows a tripartite structure. First, it critically explores the bodies of knowledge historically underpinning the concepts of territory and terrain. Developing a call for a feminist historiography of territory and terrain, we reflect upon both the gendered evolution of the concepts, and their ongoing reproduction in conceptual debates. Second, it seeks to both highlight and diversify embodied accounts and accountings of these concepts. Here, thinking with and beyond the body, we turn to the non-human and spiritual to explore territory and terrain in expanded and extended ways. Lastly, we examine bodies of expertise, reflecting on academic territories and terrains, and highlighting potential concepts and methodologies seeking to (re-)sculpt and (re-)articulate understandings of territory and terrain. The paper, whilst not all-encompassing, serves as an important provocation that seeks more equitable accounts of political geography’s messy, muddy, and lively territories and terrains.
Original languageEnglish
Article number102180
Pages (from-to)1-12
Number of pages12
JournalPolitical Geography
Early online date13 Mar 2020
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2020

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