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Vernacular mapping: Site dance and embodied urban cartographies

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In this article I explore the potential of site-based dance and performance to influence and inform subjective, cartographic processes of connecting and situating oneself in urban locations. ‘Vernacular mapping’ is explored as a process by which subjective urban experiences, trajectories and associations are mapped by individuals and retained and developed as cartographic tools through which we navigate and negotiate lived environments. The concept stems from critical geography and non-representational theory and proposes a progressive, contemporary approach in which individual routes, trajectories and vectors of mobility challenge the ‘representational certitude of cartography’. From this perspective I consider how encounters with site-based dance and performance might inform vernacular mapping processes and impact subjective-site relations.
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Keywords: cartography; embodiment; repetition; site dance; urban engagement; vernacular mapping

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: University of Chichester

Publication date: May 1, 2019

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  • Choreographic Practices operates from the principle that dance embodies ideas and can be productively enlivened when considered as a mode of critical and creative discourse. The journal provides a platform for sharing choreographic practices, critical inquiry and debate.
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