The Question of Local Attachment

The interest in the so-called ‘left behind’ raises the obvious question as to exactly what it means. The obvious interpretation is that of economic marginality; notably unemployment and diminishing job opportunities. It can also be given more cultural meanings, which might explain why so many of the old were seduced by Trump and by the … Continue reading The Question of Local Attachment

What happened to ‘geography’?

In a blog last year on his Pop Geography site, Clive Barnett discussed the future of geography as a university field of study.[1] There were two points that caught my eye. First, and in the context of the fragmentation of the field, he noted the absence of anything that holds together intellectually, the different sub-fields … Continue reading What happened to ‘geography’?

Metropolitan Fragmentation and the Difference that Countries Make

I have just read an article, published last year, that raises useful questions about jurisdictional fragmentation in urban areas and its inegalitarian effects.[1] It appeared in Politics and Society. It was originally presented at a Political Geography Workshop organized by political scientists, which, as far as I can tell, did not involve any, sensu stricto, … Continue reading Metropolitan Fragmentation and the Difference that Countries Make

Tales from California and Cumbria: The Same, But Different

There were two news stories from last week which put US-British differences in sharp perspective. Both involve fossil fuel development. Both highlight the way in which development projects are increasingly seen as ecological projects. Climate change implications are to the fore. But then there are the differences. The first story, from Cumbria in Northwest England … Continue reading Tales from California and Cumbria: The Same, But Different

‘Difference’ without end

I recently finished the manuscript for a book on Marxism and human geography. In the course of writing it, I gave some thought to the question of difference and identity, which has been of huge interest to human geographers. Of particular interest is what it might throw up when viewed through a Marxist lens, and … Continue reading ‘Difference’ without end

John Weeks and Uneven Development

John Weeks died late last year. He was a Marxist economist and Emeritus Professor at SOAS. His Capital and Exploitation is a wonderfully clear exposition of major issues in Marxist economics. He will be greatly missed. For a geographer, one of his more valuable papers was one on uneven development that appeared in Capital and … Continue reading John Weeks and Uneven Development

Anthony Giddens and Human Geography

It is forty years since the publication of Anthony Giddens’ Contemporary Critique of Historical Materialism. It was the culmination of a body of work, by a sociologist, that a number of geographers found more than simply of interest. He was very visible indeed. He was a member of the editorial board of Society and Space … Continue reading Anthony Giddens and Human Geography