I’ll be headed to Vancouver, BC, on Friday with five Urban Studies students to attend the 9th Annual Critical Geographies Mini-Conference, hosted this year by Simon Fraser University. Click here for the schedule. I’ll be presenting on a panel called “Rights to the City: Critical Politics in and Beyond the Academy”, chaired by SFU’s Eugene McCann. My PhD student Erin Goodling will be presenting on “Radical Incrementalism and Oppositional Community Development in Portland, Oregon: A Research Framework”, drawing on her recent participation in the Radical Incrementalism and Theories/Practices of Emancipatory Change workshop in Cape Town, South Africa.
If you’re in Vancouver, join us for this free conference, open to the public. Here’s the location:
149 W. Hastings St., Vancouver, BC
And here’s a description of the conference from the website:
We acknowledge that the Critical Geographies Mini-Conference will be taking place in Vancouver on unceded Indigenous land belonging to the Coast Salish peoples, including the territories of the xʷməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish), Stó:lō and Səl̓ílwətaʔ/Selilwitulh (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations.
Critical geographers view the spaces of our world with a mixture of anger and hope. We believe that society and nature do not represent themselves: we must analyze them, map them, and thus involve ourselves in their remaking. The world does not exist in order to verify our theories: it is there to be comprehended and changed. It is not to be accepted at face value: appearances deceive and space hides things from us. The earth is not flat and smooth, but scarred by power and structured by hierarchy. Reality is not immutable or inevitable, but open to change. The earth is not disposable: this is the only world we have. Ours is not the best of all possible worlds: better worlds, latent in the present, must be sought and fought for.
We are delighted to announce that the Department of Geography at Simon Fraser University will host the Ninth Annual Mini-Conference for Critical Geographers who live and/or work in our region. It will take place at SFU Woodward’s on Saturday November 22, 2014. Our emphasis is to create a friendly, engaging, and fun space for critical geographers, especially – but by no means only – graduate students. We welcome papers from across the field of geography (human, physical, GIS), and from spatially oriented scholars in other disciplines, that seek to engage with and contribute to the critical geography project. The mini-conference is open to students, faculty members, and members of the public. There is no fee for attending or participating.
All space is political. The location for the conference - SFU Woodwards - is an example. Occupying unceded indigenous lands, within the contested space of the Downtown Eastside, the building itself has been a touchstone in a brave and enduring struggle against exclusion and for social justice. While there is no pure position free from contradiction, we hope that we may use this space in ways that sustain the progressive potential of such struggles, and related geographies of possibility and freedom.