I meant to post this before I went offline for a couple of weeks for Christmas and a holiday in the Gambia, but didn’t do so. Anyway, it is a brief review of my 2011 and a look to 2012…
Highlights of 2011 would include the three months in Australia at the ANU, with time in Tasmania, Sydney and the Blue Mountains, and trips to Singapore, Hong Kong, Macau and very briefly to Shenzhen on the way there and back. I had a fascinating trip to Nigeria to visit Susan and we had a great time in Amsterdam on holiday. I was in the US twice to give talks in LA, Berkeley and Tucson. Receiving the Royal Geographical Society Murchison award was an unexpected honour. In October I returned to full-time teaching and administrative duties at Durham.
I watched quite a bit of cricket—although the two days I went to England games were badly rain-affected. England became the world’s top ranking test cricket team this year. I watched a lot of cycling too, and watching Mark Cavendish win the green jersey in the Tour de France and then win the World Championship (both true team-efforts) were the sporting highlights for me. I did more cycling this year than I’ve ever done before, over 3,500 miles, in large part because of the three months in Australia with great weather when I would usually be fighting the wind, rain and cold of a British winter and early spring.
Three edited collections came out – Reading Kant’s Geography, Sloterdijk Now and the five volume Environment and Planning set. The last two have 2012 dates on them, but they were actually published in 2011. I firmly believe that Reading Kant’s Geography and Sloterdijk Now should be seen as works of many hands, rather than mere collections. I’m very pleased with both and grateful to the contributors, my co-editor Eduardo Mendieta on the Kant book, and presses for their hard work. The Birth of Territory is still under review, though I’ve started work on revisions based on the two reports I do have. I’m hoping that this can be wrapped up reasonably soon, but a 2013 publication now seems likely.
Publications in 2012 will be thin on the ground for me. I have nothing accepted and forthcoming with journals or publishers. A couple of papers are under review, but I doubt they will be out anytime soon, even if accepted. There are a couple of long-delayed edited books I have pieces in, but I’m not holding my breath. My RGS-IBG Political Geography lecture may appear in the journal in late 2012. Being asked to do this was very gratifying, and I’m looking forward to it, albeit with some nervousness. I have some other interesting speaking engagements coming up. I’m especially looking forward to the Anachronic Shakespeare conference at New York University; the AAG session on German Philosophy and Geography; and the trip to Kentucky to give a lecture to the Committee on Social Theory. I have trips to Yale, Harvard, King’s College London, Leeds, Cambridge, Rome, Paris and Nottingham in the diary. Once I’ve finished existing commitments, and revisions, I’m hoping to return to The Space of the World. I have parts of two chapters in draft, and the Kentucky and RGS-IBG papers will shape material for a third. For once I am not committed to editing any books, though there are a couple of ideas in discussion.
I’ve now completed five full years (and a bit of 2006) as editor of Society and Space. It’s a rare privilege to be actively involved with shaping such a crucial journal and overseeing its impact within and beyond the discipline of Geography. It is an enormous amount of work, especially given the steep rise in submissions, most of which happens unseen and in hours outside a standard working week. I am fortunate to work with fine co-editors and a great journal manager. Amye Kenall, Jatinder Padda and Jan Schubert at Pion all play a crucial role. Naturally, contributors and referees make and shape the content. Together I think we put together a journal that is consistently worth reading.
2011 was also the first full year of this blog, which began in April 2010. I am very grateful for the audience I have somehow gathered along the way, and although there are doubtless a lot of passing visits, sufficient people subscribe in various ways that it feels like it has a lot of continuity of readership. There have been times, especially recently, when it has become effectively just a notice-board for events, publications and links, but hopefully there has been enough beyond that to make it distinctive. Many thanks for reading!