Guide Psychogeography (Pocket Essential series)

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I'd like to know, the only way they can regain my respect. But still, back to the thing itself. An initial description of psychogeography's main characteristics 'For psychogeography may usefully be viewed less as the product of a particular time and place than as the meeting point of a number of ideas and traditions with interwoven histories'. The first and most prominent of these is the activity of walking. The wanderer, the stroller, the flaneur and the stalker Nor must it stay here really.

It fits in with the wealthy male voyeurism, but if poor women started engaging in it, poverty would hardly be mysterious. They'd have to look deeper. A working class gothic, new strands of mystery, and for god's sake, a kind of desire that has nothing to do with exploitative johns The book opens with literature, those inspiring psychogeography as we know it today: Defoe, Blake, de Quincy, Poe, Machen, Stevenson.

Watkins's work on ley lines. Coverley writes: 'the programmatic approach of social theorists and geographers is in this instance unable to accurately refect the imaginative reworking of the environment that has been conducted so successfully by those writers whose works celebrate contemporary London. But at times it becomes Sinclairs delving deep deep into history, or Ackroyd's circular theories of geographical convergences. You have Poe's creation of a new urban type in The Man of the Crowd as cited by Benjamin and Baudelaire - 'an isolated and estranged figure who is both a man of the crowd and a detached observer of it and, as such, the avatar of the modern city'.

It does not contradict the materialist perspective of the conditioning of life and thought by objective nature. Geography, for example, deals with the determinant action of general natural forces, such as soil composition or climatic conditions, on the economic structures of a society, and thus on the corresponding conception that such a society can have of the world. Psychogeography could set for itself the study of the precise laws and specific effects of the geographical environment, consciously organized or not, on the emotions and behavior of individuals.

The adjective psychogeographical, retaining a rather pleasing vagueness, can thus be applied to the findings arrived at by this type of investigation, to their influence on human feelings, and even more generally to any situation or conduct that seems to reflect the same spirit of discovery. Taken up the situationists, there is no mention of Lefebvre where I thought there would be. They define psychogeography as 'The study of the specific effects of the geographical environment, conspicuously organised or not, on the emotions and behaviour of individuals.

Also used to designate a specific period of continuous deriving' [93] And the detournement: The integration of present or past artistic production into a superior construction of a milieu. Here the theoretical grounding, carried on by Vaneigem and de Certeau.

Psychogeography - Pocket Essential

And the final chapter on rehashing some of the awesomeness being produced about London. And it is awesome. But still, so white, so male, and what is a movement if it is only produced in two cities? Surely it must lie beyond, surely there are walkers and writers around the Globe. I have a lot of questions, but for my first foray into what psychogeography actually is after hearing the term kicked about, this is quite all right. View 1 comment. May 23, Tosh rated it really liked it. This little book by Merlin Coverley is a decent introduction to the subject of 'Psychogeography.

Well, it's what I do on a regular basis, and now I know there is a name for it. In theory, one can take a map of your town, place a cup or glass on it. Trace the bottom of the glass so that there is a circle - and then walk aimlessly in that circle. That's one technique. It sort of started with Baudelaire, re-discovered by the Surrealists, and then became serious with the Situa This little book by Merlin Coverley is a decent introduction to the subject of 'Psychogeography.

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It sort of started with Baudelaire, re-discovered by the Surrealists, and then became serious with the Situationists. It can be an adventure of a travel trip within your own room! It's endless really. But it also encourages one to go on their own adventure and to make notes, images, photographing, etc. Really it's the last adventure one can take and it becomes an individual and very subjective way of noticing the world around you.

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View 2 comments. A really useful and interesting reference book. It has some less-than-thrilling parts where Coverley speaks in general terms eg. Definitely worth reading. Nov 07, Fiana rated it it was amazing. Comprehensive overview of psychogeography mainly in its literary form. Provides useful leads into key figures, ideas, movements and texts to reference. Accessible and easy read. May 26, Deborah Mantle rated it it was ok. Practitioners of psychogeography tend to study their surroundings on foot—strolling and wandering, exploring and surveying. My own interest was in trying to see any links between psychogeography and nature writing.

Psychogeographers focus primarily on urban settings, yet some of the underlying ideas are similar. Our physical environment affects how we feel and act, negatively and positively, and yet we often lack awareness of and connection with our surroundings, our local landscape. To re-connect, we need to pay attention to our surroundings. Mar 04, Evie rated it liked it Shelves: non-fiction , urbanism. A rather good book to read if you are interested in learning more about psychogeography. It basically provides summaries to everything that's been said on the subject so far.

Very useful if you want to find out which of the different points of view agrees with you more and which points you'd like to research further. I was rather disappointed when I realised the lack of practical application for the theories cited. On the upside, the book has a rich bibliography which is worth investigating and A rather good book to read if you are interested in learning more about psychogeography. On the upside, the book has a rich bibliography which is worth investigating and does a good job of collecting the vast number of theories on the subject.

Nov 09, John Manley rated it liked it. The mere existence of this book was an enlightenment to me. Here was a name to something I thought I had been enjoying all my life, the rich interplay between psychology, cartography, geography and history. Here was a subject I would really enjoy, one that tied so many of my passions for walking together. Unfortunately that dream was soon shattered, for according to Coverley Psychogeography is for the artistic elite living in the urban expanses of the largest cities. In fact he seems to narrow it The mere existence of this book was an enlightenment to me.

In fact he seems to narrow it down to only those living in London or Paris. I feel the underlying problem with the book is the balance between the theory, and the practice. An opportunity has been missed here to take the subject forward, to open it up to the future. Has anyone else found ways of exploring the concepts?

Feb 12, Tilly rated it liked it. It's good at what it does - heck, it's excellent. If you know nothing about psychogeography, this is a far better place to start than with the columns of Will Self, and it'll put you on to figures like Walter Benjamin and de Certeau who you can peruse at your own pleasure or peril. My criticism, though, is that it feels a little thin.

Psychogeography

Perhaps this is unavoidable when the text comes in at just under pages, but it's something that continually grated on me towards the end. Most obviously, aside from two or three lines highlighting the issue, Coverley barely mentions the blatant gender inequality that stands out in the history of the discipline. Class isn't really discussed either, a further area in which I would be interested to research de Certeau's writings on the voyeur, for example, seem to have interesting implications for thinking about tower block social housing.

This book is well worth a read - it really is a good starting place for an academic foray into psychogeography's history as a discipline. This amount is subject to change until you make payment. For additional information, see the Global Shipping Program terms and conditions - opens in a new window or tab This amount includes applicable customs duties, taxes, brokerage and other fees.

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