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This talk, "Queering the Map," was given by Jen Jack Gieseking at the Futures Initiative of The Graduate Center of the City University of New York (CUNY) on October 2nd. The video, Storify, and notes from the talk can be found at http://futures.gc.cuny.edu/blog/2015/10/02/queering-the-map-recap/.
In The Practice of Everyday Life, de Certeau writes that “What the map cuts up, the story cuts across.” But what if the everyday stories you seek are already cut up by centuries of structural inequality and oppression, such as those of lesbians and queer women? In this talk on “Queering the Map,” Jack Gieseking investigates what can be gained for the study of queer lives and spaces by bringing together the isolated but overlapping stories of lesbians and queer women in maps, from the hand-drawn to the most technologically advanced and interactive.
Drawing upon qualitative and quantitative work on lesbians’ and queer women’s spaces and economies in New York City from 1983 to 2008—including multi-generational focus groups and mental maps, archival research and GIS—Gieseking works through three different types of mapping methods and platforms within a participatory action research framework. Through a close analysis of mental maps, and GIS maps made across platforms using QGIS, CartoDB, and TileMill/Mapbox, they suggest that the spatial and verbal can both obfuscate or illuminate understandings of everyday life. It is the queer practice of holding these seeming binaries in tension that reveals the most rich and complicated knowledge.
Jack’s first book is The People, Place, and Space Reader, co-edited with William Mangold, Cindi Katz, Setha Low, and Susan Saegert, and recently out with Routledge. He has held fellowships with the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation as German Chancellor Fellow; The Center for Place, Culture, and Politics; The Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies; and the Woodrow Wilson Women’s Studies Dissertation Fellows Program. Jack has published in Journal of Urban Affairs, Qualitative Inquiry, Journal of Interactive Technology & Pedagogy, Antipode, and Radical History Review, and has contributed to HASTAC as well. She also writes about his research as a blogger with the Huffington Post Gay Voices.