landscape studies

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The examination of the structure and organization of landscapes; of interrelationships between place-making, personal and social memory; of landscape as the location of cultural and ecological patterns, processes and histories; of the social life of landscapes—their reception by different societies; of ‘how and why places come to be understood and experienced as thresholds of time-space in different societies, including how places constitute geographies of belonging through and beyond urban and national space’ (Till (1999) Ecumene 6).

Landscapes may be viewed not simply as ‘scenes’ into which humans are inserted, but rather as the products of human activity, shaped through and shaping cultures (C. Sauer1925). An important development in the study of the cultural landscape is the incorporation of social theory: ‘the thrust of the new landscape studies [was] to consider landscapes as part of a process of cultural politics, rather than as the outcome of that process’ (B. Bartley et al. 2002). ‘Within landscapes are particular sites—monuments or markers—which facilitate and direct the process of “collective memory” and through which social groups situate their identities in time and place’ (Inwood et al. (2008) Soc. & Cult. Geog. 9, 4). For the social life of landscapes, see Site/Lines, the journal and online forum of the Foundation for Landscape studies.

http://www.foundationforlandscapestudies.org/index.php?p=sitelines Site/Lines: the social life of landscapes.

Subjects: Earth Sciences and Geography.

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