Ecological landscapes

Sarah Whatmore and Steve Hinchliffe

in The Oxford Handbook of Material Culture Studies

Published in print September 2010 | ISBN: 9780199218714
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Archaeology

 Ecological landscapes

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  • Archaeology
  • History and Theory of Archaeology
  • Landscape Archaeology


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This article sets out to unsettle some of the most taken for granted co-ordinates of landscapes in general and cities in particular that, if nothing else, we are safe in assuming them to be exclusively human achievements. Ecological landscapes are the focus of this article. It begins by exploring recent geographical thinking about ecological landscapes worked through diverse conversations with other disciplines — notably anthropology, and science and technology studies. Here the article highlights developments in the broad areas of phenomenology, affect, and biophilosophy in order to describe some key shifts in cultural geography's handling of materiality. Through this engagement with ecological landscapes and urban natures, the main aim of this article is to demonstrate the importance of reconsidering materials less as the passive stuff of which landscapes are made and more as energetic constituents in their fabrication. The second part explores the implications of such perspectives about new urban ecologies and landscaping practices.

Keywords: coordinates; landscapes; ecological landscapes; technology studies; urban ecologies; biophilosophy

Article.  7126 words. 

Subjects: Archaeology ; History and Theory of Archaeology ; Landscape Archaeology

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