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Das Reden vom Raum. Zur Aktualität des Spatial Turn – Programmatik, Determinismus und „sozial konstruierter Raum“

Nikolai Roskamm

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Schlagwörter: Raumdebatte, kritische Geographie, Raumsoziologie, Determinismus, Soziale Konstruktion


Reflecting on the “Spatial Turn”: Objectives, Determinism and “Space as a Social Construction”.


Everybody is talking about space. In fact, for some time now scholars in the social and cultural sciences have been giving particular attention to space and space theory. The starting point of this paper is the proclamation of a “spatial turn” in American radical geography in the late 1980s. After a critical reconstruction of the history of the “spatial turn” two main scholars come under observation: Henry Lefebvre and Michel  Foucault. This paper shows the construction of these scholars as references of the “spatial turn”. Looking specifically at the core of the criticism of the spatial turn – the reproach of determinism – this paper discusses and analyses the most popular spatial turn claim: the argument that there is no danger of determinism because of the nature of space as a “social construction”. The aim of the paper is to explore the meanings of these positions and assess why they are still important for current discourses.

Keywords: spatial turn, critical geography, sociology of space, determinism, social construction