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Multicultural Atmospheres: Affect, Living with Difference and the Craft of Writing

Dan Swanton, Geography, University of Edinburgh

11/11/15 - 5:00-6:30PM - W/243


My paper is an experiment in geographical storytelling that begins with a walk through the streets of Keighley, a former mill town in northern England.  The walk is a fictionalised reconstruction that stitches together diverse research materials (dérives, participant observation, interviews, newspaper archives, photographs, urban myth and hearsay) to evoke and dramatise experiences of living with difference in a northern mill town.  The story is my attempt to work through a set of worries about what is at stake when I – and we – write. In particular, the walk offers an opportunity to reflect on a resurgent interest in storytelling and the craft of academic writing that focuses on the creativity of writing, cultural poetics and the performativity of stories.  Along the way this story seeks to perform a different kind of analysis, developing ways of writing about affect, the everyday, and the more-than-representational geographies of living with difference and urban encounters.