Another CURE-led call for papers for 2014 AAG: Energy and the socioecological production of space

Visitors to this blog may be interested in this call for papers for the Annual Meeting of the Association of American Geographers, which will take place between the 8th and 12th of April 2014 in Tampa, Florida.

Energy and the socioecological production of space

Matt Huber (Syracuse University)
Saska Petrova (University of Manchester)

Energy is often talked about in explicitly geographical terms. Most notably, the language of geopolitics elevates oil resources as a classic case of a strategic object, fixed in particular spaces that becomes an object of conflict. Yet, in this narrative space is treated as a passive backdrop in the grand geopolitical struggle between states. Geographers (see, e.g., Calvert and Simandan 2010; Bridge et al. 2013) are beginning to think more expansively about the ways in which the social relations of energy production, distribution, and consumption are constitutive of various kinds of spatialities (e.g., extractive enclaves, infrastructural networks, urban spatial form). An implicit insight from this new research is that energy is central to the social production of space. In the wake of Henri Lefebvre’s work of that title – and critical theorizations of space from David Harvey to Doreen Massey – understanding space as a social product has become a truism in critical human geography. Yet, this is not a purely “social” or “human” story, and we rarely think of the ways in which resources, energy and nonhuman actors are co-constitutive in this “production”; making it a socioecological production of space, rather than simply social production. The purpose of this Call for Papers is to bring together critical geographers to consider the ways in which energy is central in the socioecological production of space.

Questions addressed in the session include:

  • Are social struggles over space also struggles over energy (and vice versa)?
  • What alternative spatial imaginaries are articulated by various forms of global resistance to fossil fuel development?
  • What is the role of energy in classical geopolitical imaginaries?
  • How do modes of energy consumption and distribution become “locked in” to the built environment and fixed capital formation?
  • How do modes of energy production necessitate different forms of land-use patterns and spatialities of extraction?
  • How can we conceptualize ‘community’, ‘commons’ and ‘communal’ in relation to issues of energy demand and consumption?
  • What is the relationship between networks of energy distribution and political contestation?

Potential topics include, but are not limited to:

  • Energy localism
  • Energy and place attachment
  • Energy and urban spatialities
  • Energy and nationalism
  • Energy and citizenship
  • Energy and globalization
  • The energy commons
  • Energy and the politics of scale

Abstracts of no more than 250 words should be sent to and no later than the 20th of October 2013

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