The boundary, border or frontier is a dominant feature of how we understand ourselves in space: self and other, here and there, belonging and not-belonging are structured and arise through the awareness and affirmation of a border that very often has a material presence and geopolitical, cultural and existential implications. In narrative worlds, boundaries are also key in constructing articulated spatial frames that generate an impression of realism. However, what happens when these boundaries fail to fulfil
representation that exists
‘alongside the world’ rather than on top of it.
Such a framework does not necessarily need to altogether reject discursive
analyses in favour of a ‘materialist’ approach, but rather asserts the latter as
a ‘useful counter’ to the former (Bennett, 2004: 358). The object-oriented
approach, and the wider philosophical movement of speculative realism more
generally, points towards the limits of deconstructive, language-focused critiques. With respect to maps, the deconstructionist work of the early critical
cartographers has been fundamental for
forward-looking and creative ( Gergen, 2015 ; and for a critique see Wolfe, 1989 ). Moving beyond the dominant focus of academic scholarship on realism and critique, pragmatists advocate an epistemology that is proudly political with a small p; in the spirit of post-representational thought, their work is focused on generating ideas that can reconfigure the world.
In this vein, the expedition was an attempt to facilitate the formation of publics comprising diverse groups of people focused around issues of common concern. The expedition was based on the pragmatic
an impression of realism fails to provide this function. Focusing on a set of twentieth-century fantastic narratives by Spanish, French and British writers that mediate between realities and imaginaries in their treatment of borders, García examines their discourse of boundaries at three levels: ontologically, narratologically and thematically. What is of particular interest is the function of two specific tropes that transgress the ‘realistic’ system of boundaries, operating according to the physics and logics of our extratextual world: horizontal vertigo – a loss
The invisibility of border-related trauma narratives in the Finnish–Russian borderlands
Realism aimed at silencing ambiguous and hesitant expressions of identities in literature. The critics interpreted the novels primarily as representations of the tragic history of Karelia as a national borderland, but the ambiguity of individual identities was not an aspect that was visibly emphasised. Nevertheless, some reviewers appreciated that there were no strong, black and white contradictions between the protagonists representing the different sides of the war, as was commonly found in Soviet literature discussing war and revolutionary themes (Rugojev, 1969
Border images and narratives: paradoxes, spheres, aesthetics
Johan Schimanski and Jopi Nyman
afford or hinder the partage du sensible in different ways? To take for example the two main aesthetic strategies focused on in this volume – image and narrative – is one ‘better suited’ to crossing the border from private border experience into the public sphere than the other?
Our volume addresses a wide variety of media (text, cinema, video, television, architecture, painting, drawing, performance, ritual, park, landscape, installation, monument, sign, dress, data cloud, drone surveillance, photography, dream, mirror), modes (realism, the
. and Norrie , A. (eds) ( 2013 ) Critical realism: Essential readings . London and New York, NY : Routledge .
Banerjee , A.V. and Duflo , E. ( 2009 ) The experimental approach to development economics. Annual Review of Economics , 1 , 1 , 151–78 .
Barnes , T.J. ( 2008 ) American pragmatism: Towards a geographical introduction. Geoforum , 39 , 4 , 1542–54 .
Bebbington , A. and Kothari , U. ( 2006 ) Transnational development networks. Environment and Planning A , 38 , 5 , 849–66 .
Bernstein , R.J. ( 2010 ) The pragmatic turn
Testimonies of survival and rescue at Europe’s border
Karina Horsti and Ilaria Tucci
knowledge can be translated into a familiar mimetic universe’. The anti-realist position, on the contrary, means ‘both a claim that the Holocaust is not knowable or would be knowable only under radically new regimes of knowledge and that it cannot be captured in traditional representational schemata’ ( 2000 : 4). Rothberg presents a third mode of representation that engages with both the realist (or documentary) and the anti-realist (or radically new aesthetic), that of traumatic realism. This approach combines the banal everyday and the extreme horrific experiences of
Heterogeneous temporalities, algorithmic frames and subjective time in
the world of consciousness:
now no philosophical doctrine denies that the same images can enter at the same
time into two distinct systems, one belonging to science, wherein each image, related
only to itself, possesses an absolute value; and the other, the world of consciousness,
wherein all the images depend on a central image, our body, the variations of which
they follow. The question raised between realism and idealism then becomes quite
clear: what are the relations which these two systems of images maintain with each
other? And it is easy to see that
of this chapter was to show how thinking from a pragmatist perspective might be useful in understanding work carried out in social science. My exemplar was the human geographer William Bunge and the maps he produced at three different points in his career – that is, insofar as he had a career. Pragmatism cannot be used to determine the validity of Bunge’s claims embedded in his maps. It is not a philosophy like positivism or realism, or even Marxism, which provide criteria to evaluate truth claims. Rather, as Menand (2001 , xi) puts it, pragmatism is “an idea