Update

It’s been a busy few months, and as a result, I’ve once again let the blogging slide, but hopefully the impending summer will give me a chance to get things up and running once again.

In any case, here are some of the interesting things that have happened recently – with more updates to follow soon!

1) The session on the Geographies of Sound that myself, Matt Benwell and Bethan Evans are organising at the RGS-IBG this summer has been chosen to represent the Society’s new journal Geo which will be launching officially during the conference. We’re really excited by this, and it’s made what was already a fascinating set of papers even more exciting. I will update details of the session in a few weeks time – we’ve got two sessions covering a really interesting ways of engaging with research on sound & space.

2) The AAG Annual Meeting took place in Tampa, FL last month. As always, the jet lag flying back from the States was a nightmare, but it was great to listen to some fascinating talks. Highlights included Ayonna Datta’s Urban Geography Plenary on Sexual Violence in Delhi slums, Rinaldo Walcott’s Antipode Lecture, and a fascinating author meets critics discussion of Joel Wainwright’s book on the involvement of the military in geographical research in Oaxaca (see Rachel Woodward’s review for Antipode here). I was speaking about my research on colonial Pondicherry as a contact zone in a session organised by Lucy Mayblin and Lucy Jackson at Sheffield, which was really interesting and helped to sharpen up some of my ideas thanks to some interesting questions and discussion. I also was a discussant in a session on borders organised by Margath Walker, which was again interesting, and I learned a lot about borders as a result.

3) It was the annual Barcelona field class at the start of April, which seems a long time ago now, but once again, the city was a great space for our students to explore. The various people we took them to meet were great hosts – despite the fact that this was the 5th or 6th year that we’ve been to visit. The Crisis, and the continuing effects of it upon Spain are still all too visible, however, and some of our students projects explored some interesting ideas here, from student futures after graduation through to ideas about cosmopolitan identity construction amongst subaltern and migrant actors. the first bits of work are beginning to come through now, so I’m looking forward to seeing the results.

4) I’ve also been asked to present at a workshop in Manchester in early June on ‘Theorising Resistance in Development’, (some details here) where again I’m going to be speaking quite historically about Pondicherry, but (hopefully!) tying some of these historical events into more contemporary ideas about how freedom and liberty are framed in the Indian constitution – particularly drawing on Gurpreet Mahajan’s work here.

5) This coming Wednesday (the 7th of May) with colleagues in our research cluster at Liverpool, we are organising the latest Engage@Liverpool methods ‘Masterclass’ on the challenges of participatory research techniques. This is part of the University’s engagement with methods training for doctoral and postdoctoral students, and together with Bethan we’ll be speaking about our work with KCC Live! on the riots project which we undertook last year. There are still places if people are interested in finding out more – it’s free of charge but you do need to register – details here.

That’s it for now – will hopefully update with enw developments as things progress over the summer!

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