Innovative Cartographies: Mappings in the Arts

PhD School at the Faculty of Humanities at University of Copenhagen

Joint Doctoral Seminar:

Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München and University of Copenhagen
In recent years the cultural implications of globalization have become a topic of increased discussion. In spite of differing standpoints and emphases, there is a general agreement that the cultural landscape has shifted. A new set of concepts, metaphors and spatial models have been assigned the task of describing this shift, e.g. networks, navigation, interdisciplinarity, hybridity, transnationality, world literature, etc. In this development, the map plays a peculiar role. On the one hand, the map has become a ubiquitous tool of everyday life and one of the preferred representational models for a multitude of phenomena. On the other hand, it would seem that a host of associations that accompany the traditional conception of the map (the nation state, analogue materiality, mimesis, atemporality etc.) seems ill fitted to accurately represent and conceptualize the changes in the make-up of contemporary culture.

This seminar asks its participants to consider which innovative cartographies and mapping practices would be useful to represent cultural phenomena in a globalized world. Do we need to rethink maps, mapping and representation as such in order to grasp new and more complex objects? What would such new maps look like and how does one do the mapping? And what political, epistemological, aesthetic, or digital aspects of mapping are particularly relevant to globalized cultural phenomena. Conversely, what historical cultural objects appear if, from our current vantage point, we rethink the map? And does the very concept of globalization appear in a new light, if we think cartographically about the past?

The arts, in particular, would seem to be a fruitful source for an investigation of innovative cartographic practices. If we regard the map not merely as a template for the organization, comprehension and management of space, but also as a template that has been transformed and transcended by novels, paintings, and films, which new spatial models appear in the arts? How, to quote Austin, have the arts done things with maps? Or, which alternative mapping practices have perhaps been overshadowed by the emblem of spatial representations: the topographical map?

The seminar will combine lectures, presentations from participants and text workshops. When registering, please include a title and a 2-300 words abstract of a 20 mn. paper presentation.

ECTS credits: 3 (with paper) / 1,5 (without paper).

Registration deadline: Please register via this website no later than January 25, 2014.

For further information, please contact:

In Denmark:
Frederik Tygstrup (
Anders Engberg-Pedersen (

In Germany:
Robert Scockhammer (

Link to registration