Sunday, April 13, 2008

Missin' the AAG '08


[Image: Boston 1880 - Societies-Secret and Benefit, Hospitals, Asylums and Homes, from Report on the Social Statistics of Cities, Compiled by George E. Waring, Jr., United States. Census Office, Part I, 1886.]

Sadly, I will not be able to attend this year's Association of American Geographer's meeting in Boston all next week, due to my craptastic back injury, which is finally beginning to make some progress distancing me further from the freaky prospect of having to have disc surgery. Finally, whew!
Nevertheless, I was scheduled to appear on a panel this coming Tuesday afternoon entitled Architectures of Security: Border/Space in a Mobile World. Was super excited (for obvious reasons) but, also to be presenting with the likes of Louise Amoore, Alexandra Hall and Stephen Graham from Durham University in the UK, Deborah Cowen out of the University of Toronto, and Keller Easterling from Yale. A roundtable on borders and militarism with these folks is an absolute privilege for this little blogger, let me tell ya.
Check out everyone's abstract:
Deborah Cowen - University of Toronto / The Border as 'Seam': Logistic Space, the Social, and Security
Louise Amoore & Alexandra Hall - University of Durham, UK / Taking People Apart: Digitized Dissection and the Body at the Border
Stephen Graham, Prof - Durham University / Global Homelands: Geographies Of Urban Rebordering
Bryan Finoki - Subtopia / Subverting the Nomadic Fortress
Keller Easterling - Yale University / Border Mimicry
Wicked. After reading these, I was even more excited to hear these ideas developed further than I was to actually give my own presentation, which, as you can see, was going to offer some research into the history and phenomenon of cross-border tunnels perforating the U.S. and Mexico boundary.
Yeah, I'm bummed... this would have been fabulous, to present, to meet folks, and to just wander around the great arcade of geographers and assorted landscape heads who are in my mind doing some of the most intriguing and important work I can dream about, many of whom are surely Subtopianites!, right???
Last year was great to have met a bunch, so I'm sorry I won't be able to follow up with many of you this time around! Next year.....
However, I am using my undelivered paper to further a crazy book proposal around border spaces, so - certainly, all is not lost this time aroud. But, more on that topic later.
As it's turned out, the panel has slimmed down quite a bit due to a crazy synchronicity of unforseen forces. Louise, Keller, Stephen, and myself have all had to pull out for various personal reasons, leaving Deb and Alex to co-star the session. But don't let that deter you from checking it out if you are in Boston next week, their talks are not to me missed, I assure you.
With that said, if you are going to be around, definitely go pop in on the conference. I mean, just look at this fat program! There is so much going on it's a shame even when you are there because you can never possibly check out all the sessions of interest.
But, worth seeing are a few of my friends who will be giving their own presentations on some very interesting topics.
Yes, go see Javier Arbona break down Public Space and Biking Rights: A Historical Geography of Critical Mass in San Francisco, part of this session: Urban Know-How: Practice, Politics, and Performance II. Sorry I couldn't make it with ya Jav, next year!
And, then, check out Kanarinka D'Ignazio's presentation on The Poetic Body in Social and Political Space, part of Urban Know-How: Practice, Politics, and Performance I. (Thanks again Kanarinka!)
Of course, don't miss this opportunity to catch a glimpse of the one and only Trevor Paglen (AKA "Agent Plorver", recently spotted on The Colbert Rapport talking about his new book, I Could Tell You but Then You Would Have to Be Destroyed by Me: Emblems from the Pentagons Black World) who will be talking about the Heavens Above or AFP-731 as part of this session, Locating the Military-Industrial Complex II, and will also appear on this panel: What's Activist? The next generation talks praxis organized by another Subtopian ally Sara Koopman.
There's also another compadre -- Andrew Burridge -- representing The No Border Network and Alternative Discourses/Practices Against Global Apartheid at the U.S.-Mexico Border. Another shame I can't be there.
And if that isn't enough, believe me, there is plenty more to check out. If I were gonna, by some miracle, make it, I would try to hit these session up myself:

Geographies of Detention and Confinement III: Citizenship, Im/migration, and Mobility - Alexandra Hall
Islands, Archipelagos, and Bodies: The Legal Geography of Detention in the War on Terror - Rich Nisa
Geography in ominous intersection with interrogation and torture: Reflection on detention in Israel - Ghazi Falah
Radical Cartography: Artists making activist maps - Lize Mogel
Securitising the City: Constructing Resilience in the UK - Peter Rogers, Dr
MIME-ing the cultural turn: cultural intelligence, counterinsurgency and killing fields
Iraq: problems and prospects - Derek Gregory / Locating the Military-Industrial Complex III


Decentralization and Equity: Watershed Partnerships along the US-Mexico Border
Bridged Confinements, Shared Battlefields, Movement
The Forgotten Land: Indian and Bangladeshi Border Enclaves
Taking People Apart: Digitized Dissection and the Body at the Border
Fronteras Vivas or Dead Ends?: The sustainability of military settlement projects in the Amazon borderlands of Peru.
Boundless Nature, Bounded Nations: Governing Transboundary Water Post 9/11
Embodying the border: Cuban migrants and the 'wet foot/dry foot policy'
Detecting Land Use and Land Cover Change in the Texas-Mexico Border Twin Cities with Remote Sensing Data Beginning in 1980s
The United League of Indigenous Nations Treaty and Crossborder Cooperation
Thick Borders: Operating in southern Arizona
Knowledge Production and National Identity on the Border
A binational comparison of diversity and specialization in cities along the U.S.-Mexican border
Governments de facto and the border concept


The Legacy of Federal Military Lands in the U.S.: A Geographical Retrospective
Climate Change and Potential Effects on Future U.S. Military Operations
The geographies of projecting and rejecting imperial power
Environmental Security: A Framework for Conflict Analysis
Bases and Places: The Cultural Hegemony of Militarism in American Society

Yeah, I know, dudes, come on! I can't believe the AAG hasn't developed some sort of video dvd archive project of all the sessions, to be handed out to participants afterwards, or at the very least purchased, so we can go back and view all the panels we missed, or see again the ones we caught. It's overwhelming, as always. But, for those of you who do get to make it, enjoy!


Blogger javier arbona said...

Hey Dude,
hope you gets well... Missing you in Boston. For anyone checking this out on Friday, there will also be a happy hour for the socialist/"radical" geographers (you might already be one and not know it) at People's RepubliK in Central Sq. (I know, just too cliche, right?)
Thanks for the plug ;)

6:00 AM  

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