CfP. Other critical geographies. Royal Geographical Society with Institute of British Geographers, Annual International Conference, London, 30th August – 1st September 2023

In the last few years, a growing interest in the histories and spatialities of critical and radical
geographies has been shown by historians of geography and other scholars. While former efforts
to rediscover ‘noble ancestors’ for radicals in the discipline have mostly addressed early
anarchist geographers such as Reclus and Kropotkin (Springer 2016), recent contributions
increasingly focus on histories of critical and radical geographies of the second half of the
twentieth century (Barnes and Sheppard 2019), including geographies of decolonisation (Clayton
2020). Several scholars are also stressing the need to enlarge the focus to include geographies
produced outside the Anglo-American and ‘Northern’ ‘cores’ of the discipline, and to extend and
explode disciplinary boundaries. This means dealing with people, places, cultures and languages
in the production of geography’s knowledges and practices that have been variously excluded or
marginalised for reasons such as gender, race, class, politics, positionality and ‘fit’ with canons
and paradigms that periodically dominate academic geography (Berg et al. 2021; Craggs and
Neate 2020; Jöns, Monk and Keighren 2017; Melgaço 2017). Recently, ideas on diversifying
archives, languages and methodologies (Hodder, Heffernan and Legg 2021) have favoured the
rediscovery of more or less ‘eminent’ figures of geographers from ‘peripheral’ locations such as
Latin America (Davies 2023; Ferretti 2019), and the translation into English of key contributions
such as Milton Santos’ books (Santos 2017, 2021a and 2021b).
While these commendable efforts are progressively showing that there is much more variety in
‘subversive’ or ‘subaltern’ geographical traditions than was commonly believed, much work
remains to do toward the inclusion and rediscovery of more and diverse stories and histories in
and around our discipline.
Firmly believing that this work is a relevant task for decolonising geography, theory and praxis,
we call for further rediscoveries of ‘other’ (radical, critical, feminist, queer, anticolonial,
decolonial, anarchist, Marxist, anti-racist, antifascist and more …) geographical traditions
coming from politically, epistemologically or geographically overlooked places.
We are especially (although not exclusively) interested in putting an emphasis on individuals
rather than categories or ‘schools’, and on dissidences and exceptions rather than norms,
paradigms and canons.

We invite contributions especially focusing on (but not limited to):
Critical/radical geographies from outside the Anglosphere
Critical/radical geographies from outside the ‘Global North(s)’
Feminist historiographies of geography and geographical ideas
Critical/radical geographies from non-academic, non-canonized or
academically/politically marginalized authors
Histories of critical/radical geographical thinking from beyond Geography and outside
Undisciplined critical/radical geographies: critical approaches to spaces and places across
and outside disciplinary boundaries and established periodizations

Diversifying archives and sources for decolonizing geographical histories
Issues with monolingualisms and cultural imperialisms – far from limited to the ‘Anglo’
Issues with multilingualism and translation
Plural and contested definitions of what is ‘radical’ or ‘critical’
Critiques and reflections on geographical disciplinarity
What if the radical/critical/alternative becomes mainstream?
Format: one or two presentations slot(s), in-person
Please send your title and abstract (maximum 200 words) to federico.ferretti6@unibo.it anda.davies@qmul.ac.uk by 6th March 2023.

Convenors: Federico Ferretti and Archie Davies

Barnes T. and E Sheppard (eds) (2019) Spatial histories of radical geography. Oxford: Wiley.
Berg L, Best U, Gilmartin M and Larsen HG (eds.) (2021) Placing critical geographies:
Historical geographies of critical geography. London: Routledge.
Clayton D (2020) The passing of ‘Geography’s Empire’ and question of geography in
decolonization, 1945–1980. Annals of the American Association of Geographers 110: 1540-1558
Craggs R and Neate H (2020) What happens if we start from Nigeria? Diversifying histories of
geography Annals of the American Association of Geographers, 110: 899-916. 1540-1558
Davies A (2023) A world without hunger, Josué de Castro and the history of geography.
Liverpool: Liverpool University Press.
Ferretti F (2019) Rediscovering other geographical traditions. Geography Compass
13(3):e12421. doi: 10.1111/gec3.12421.
Hodder J, Heffernan M and Legg S (2021) The archival geographies of twentieth-century
internationalism: nation, empire and race. Journal of Historical Geography, 71, 1–11.
Jöns H, Monk J, Keighren IM (2017) Introduction: toward more inclusive and comparative
perspectives in the histories of geographical knowledge. The Professional Geographer
Melgaço L (2017) Thinking outside the bubble of the Global North: introducing Milton Santos
and “the active role of geography”. Antipode 49(4):946–951.
Santos M (2017) Towards another globalization. Cham: Springer.
Santos M (2021a) The nature of space. Durham: Duke University Press
Santos M (2022b) For a new geography. Minneapolis: Minnesota University Press
Springer S (2016) The anarchist roots of geography: toward spatial emancipation. Minneapolis:
Minnesota University Press.