Call for Papers: Fugitive Geographies

October 28, 2010 at 10:21 pm Leave a comment

Re-blogged from Life Without Buildings.
Written by Jimmy Stamp.
Originally posted October 28, 2010.
Copyright © 2007 Life Without Buildings.

“From the unique perspective of the criminal fugitive, the built environment is both accomplice and obstacle – a mercurial landscape that offers concealment one moment and prevents escape the next.To be fugitive is to exist in a continuous present, where successful evasion depends on the ability to re-read and react to a shifting context. Fugitive Geographies is an investigation into this elusive and transitory condition where both subject and context exist in a precariously unstable state, where boundaries and borders are unclear, and where the criminal takes new agency over the environment. The symposium aims to bring together the efforts and ideas from the fields of architecture, art history, sociology, criminology, forensics, cartography, media studies, political science, psychology and history. Papers may investigate a range of themes and interpretations around the topic including, but not limited to:

The Getaway
When evasion becomes a priority, how is the fugitive’s perception of the environment transformed? What are the spatial or psychological implications of constant movement in the landscape? How do governments reshape borders and boundaries through extraordinary rendition and “black sites”?

The Hideout
What are the sociological or geographical implications of trying to live a normal life, shadowed by the constant fear of arrest or deportation? How are transient spaces –crowds, safehouses, ersatz constructs– created or used in a fugitive state? What is architecture on the lam?

The Cover-up
The fugitive state is one based on deception – from the concealment of the act to the concealment of identity. Radical redesigns of the environment may be necessary in this effort: chemically altered waterways, restructured finances, burned villages. How are geographies altered with a cover-up in mind?

Fugitive Geographies is organized by Andreas Kalpakci, Eero Puurunen, David Rinehart and Jimmy Stamp, the 2nd year graduate students of the Yale School of Architecture Master of Environmental Design program. The symposium complements the 2011 M.E.D. research colloquium Space, Crime, & Architecture.

Fugitive Geographies will open on March 24rd with a keynote address by Thomas Y. Levin, Associate Professor of German at Princeton University, where he teaches media and cultural theory and serves on the executive committee of Princeton’s Program in Media and Modernity. Levin’s areas of enquiry includes the philosophy, aesthetic theory, technology, and the politics of surveillance. His book CTRL [space]: Rhetorics of Surveillance from Bentham to Big Brother (MIT Press, 2002) is the catalogue of a major exhibition which he curated at the ZKM in Karlsruhe, Germany.

Interested graduate students must submit an abstract of no more than 300 words along with a curriculum vitae by email to Each proposal should clearly articulate the subject matter and its relevancy to the symposium’s theme. All submissions must be received by January 7, 2011. Successful candidates will be notified by the middle of January. Initial drafts of papers for a 20-minute presentation will be due on February 21, 2011. Final submission will be due by March 10, 2011.”

>> October 28’s daily design idea is the mind, not the eye, is responsible for forming our understanding of space.


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