Progressive Geographies over the coming weeks and months – what is, and isn’t appropriate at this time?

I’m not entirely sure how much or what kind of blogging to do over the coming weeks. This blog has been quieter over the past few weeks anyway, and with the current situation most of what I post seems increasingly irrelevant. At the moment, I don’t feel I have anything to add to the chorus of commentary about coronavirus itself, despite the connection to some themes of my previous work – Foucault’s work on medicine and public health, surveillance and so on; Canguilhem’s interest in biology and medicine; Shakespeare on contagion…

So, I’m torn. It’s having an effect on my own work, in a very minor way, with the cancellation of some talks and all forthcoming archival work. But I am still trying to do some writing, and had an update on the work I’ve recently done for The Early Foucault ready to post. I also have a couple of recordings of talks that I was planning on sharing. So, some degree of normal service, or inappropriate in the current situation? Comments welcome.

Update: I should have added that in 2014-15 I put together a reading list on the Ebola crisis. This was because of a personal connection to what was happening, and a sense that there wasn’t a comparable place providing links. I did give one short talk on Ebola, and it’s continued to be part of my Geopolitics Today teaching at Warwick.

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8 Responses to Progressive Geographies over the coming weeks and months – what is, and isn’t appropriate at this time?

  1. ElP says:

    I am finding it increasing difficult to work, which I initially thought would be a silver lining to increased isolation. I find updates from this blog and other mailings helpful in drawing some of my attention away from our late unpleasantness–and lo I am able to actually think otherwise! So obviously fewer updates would occur because of your own dealing with things, but know that it’s a positive addition for at least one marooned researcher.

  2. dmf says:

    be grateful for whatever you have time/energy for especially recorded talks, I work in public health and anything that adds to quality of life is most welcome, thanks

  3. As a cultural geographer who is affiliated to a university as a VA, but who works (for the most part) as an independent scholar and freelancer I find your blog posts extremely insightful and helpful. Maintaining a semblance of normality – and continuing to post and exchange information about our respective areas of research and critical thinking – is really important in these challenging times. Many readers value and achieve a sense of community from reading your work…including me. So, I hope this feedback encourages you to keep sharing. Thank you…

    • dmf says:

      “It is about resisting incarceration as a generalized form of life.
      In academia, that means roaming around and stealing more than ever before (Harney & Moten, 2013). If the response to the pandemic is individualized, pushing us to intimately interiorize austerity measures from our desks (or beds), we need to break through. The neoliberal (re)structuring of our work and material conditions have already produced an enormous hiatus of solidarity-based organizing (Coin, 2017). But in writing, debating, questioning—more than in the isolation of tweeting—we shall do better. Our invitation is to offer comfort to your colleagues in need – through WhatsApp groups, Zoom meetings and the likes – but not stop there. We need to fight the colonization operated by austerity measures beyond the immanent threat, which will be rolled out through online teaching, remote working, and diagrams of ‘student satisfaction’. The struggle can be carried working within the uncertainty of the current times—breaking in and opening-up spaces of encounter and circulation beyond the institution, beyond the self.”

  4. Gordon Hull says:

    I get your blog in my email every day and look forward to it! I’m not getting much done either (except admin at the university, which seems to be the last thing that’s going to go away), but I value knowing the community is there, learning about important new books and articles from you (like Amoore’s) and of course about your progress in piecing together Foucault’s life.

  5. stuartelden says:

    dmf, Carol, Gordon – many thanks for these replies. I appreciate your kind words and will try to keep up some degree of normality in what I post. Posting things about things being made open access, streaming of otherwise cancelled talks etc. as well as I’m aware of them. There should be some Foucault content next week. thanks again and stay safe

  6. Pingback: The Early Foucault Update 31: IMEC, Paris, Uppsala and the impact of the coronavirus | Progressive Geographies

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