Cosmopolitanism and Place: Spatial Forms in Contemporary by E. Johansen

By E. Johansen

Cosmopolitanism and position considers the best way modern Anglophone fiction connects international identities with the adventure in neighborhood locations. taking a look at fiction set in metropolises, neighborhood towns, and rural groups, this ebook argues that the standard adventure of those locations produces kinds of large connections that emphasize social justice.

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Become of increased significance” (Postmodern 294). This, further, leads to a vision of space as fundamentally mutable: “if capitalists become increasingly sensitive to the spatially differentiated qualities of which the world’s geography is composed, then it is possible for the peoples and powers that command those spaces to alter them in such a way as to be more rather than less attractive to highly mobile capital” (Postmodern 295). While this would seem to parallel much of what Henri Lefebvre, Doreen Massey, and James Clifford have to say about place and its constructedness, Harvey maps out of a vision of time–space compression where the disposability of time and the fragmentation of space and place make social change all but impossible.

And disposability” (Postmodern 286). Rather than the enduring cultural values and meanings that Heidegger situates in the cottage in the Black Forest, cultural values and meanings become commodities like all others: disposability “mean[s] more than just throwing away produced goods . . but also being able to throw away values, lifestyles, stable relationships, and attachments to things, buildings, places, people, and received ways of doing and being” (Postmodern 286). This changing conception of time, Harvey argues, leads to a fragmented notion of space: “as spatial barriers diminish [through the instantaneity of time] so we become much more sensitized to what the world’s spaces contain” (Postmodern 294).

Leila Aboulela’s The Translator, Anar Ali’s Baby Khaki’s Wings, and Rattawut Lapcharoensap’s Sightseeing, set in Aberdeen, Khartoum, Calgary, and the suburbs 36 C o s m o p o l i ta n i s m a n d P l ac e of Bangkok respectively, imagine an uneasy relationship to cosmopolitanism. Cosmopolitan affiliations are difficult to sustain—even create—across the highly policed class, gender, and religious boundaries of the regional city. Unlike the metropolis where these affiliations are often taken for granted, the cosmopolitan figures of these regional city texts are frequently isolated from their own communities—and from other cosmopolitans—because these cosmopolitan worldviews are understood as a contestation of the (seemingly) comfortable parochialism of the regional city; cosmopolitanism is considered most explicitly here as a discrepant way of approaching the world.

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