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Interdisciplinary Humanities Group

The ‘Spatial Turn’ and the Humanities

Abstract

The humanities are faced with a major conceptual and methodological reorientation known as the ‘spatial turn.’ This reorientation flows from the recognition that all human action has a spatial dimension, inflecting classical questions about the human condition. Many humanities scholars, while tangentially aware of this development, are unclear about the new theories of spatiality and embodiment, or how to apply them in their fields of analysis. Sparked in part by the philosophical writings of Walter Benjamin and Gaston Bachelard, the spatial turn has gained increased influence in recent years.