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Cartographies of Differences

Interdisciplinary Perspectives


Edited By Ulrike M. Vieten and Gill Valentine

This volume investigates the process of learning how to live with individual and group differences in the twenty-first century and examines the ambivalences of contemporary cosmopolitanism. Engaging with the concept of ‘critical cartography’, it emphasizes the structural impact of localities on the experiences of those living with difference, while trying to develop an account of the counter-mappings that follow spatial and social transformations in today’s world. The contributors focus on visual, normative and cultural embodiments of difference, examining dynamic conflicts at local sites that are connected by the processes of Europeanization and globalization.
The collection explores a wide range of topics, including conflicting claims of sexual minorities and conservative Christians, the relationship between national identity and cosmopolitanism, and the ways that cross-cultural communication and bilingualism can help us to understand the complex nature of belonging. The authors come from a variety of disciplinary backgrounds and all contribute to a vernacular reading of cosmopolitanism and transnationalism, aimed at opening up new avenues of research into living with difference.
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Notes on Contributors

← 222 | 223 →Notes on Contributors

DAVINA COOPER is Professor of Law and Political Theory at the University of Kent. Her work approaches questions of transformative politics – their possibilities, limits, and conflicts – in relation to the state, experiments in living and cultural diversity. Her work focuses on bringing new conceptual thinking to these spaces and politics, and in turn works from these sites to explore new ways of conceptualising the state, power, care, equality and markets. Her current work explores how the state might be re-imagined in ways that could support a progressive politics. Publications include: Everyday Utopias: The Conceptual Life of Promising Spaces (2014); Challenging Diversity: Rethinking Equality and the Value of Difference (2004); Governing out of Order: Space, Law and the Politics of Belonging (1998); Power in Struggle: Feminism, Sexuality (1995); and Sexing the City: Lesbian and Gay Politics within the Activist State (1994).

ANNA GAWLEWICZ is a Research Associate at the School of Social and Political Sciences, University of Glasgow. Her interests include migration, transnationalism, social diversity, sexuality, postsocialism, Polish migration to the UK and reflexive qualitative methodologies. She holds a PhD in Human Geography from the University of Sheffield (2014). Her PhD dissertation (2010–2014) explored how migration from a postsocialist society (Poland) to a postcolonial state (the UK) impacts on people’s values and attitudes towards difference in terms of ethnicity, religion, class, sexuality, gender, age and disability. It investigated migrant encounters with difference and the circulation of ideas about difference between migrants and their significant others in a sending society. Recent publications include: ‘Language and translation strategies in researching migrant experience of difference from the position of migrant researcher’ (Qualitative Research, 2015 [doi: 10.1177/1468794114557992 – Early Online Publication]) and ‘“We inspire each other subconsciously”: the circulation of attitudes towards ← 223 | 224 →difference between Polish migrants in the UK and their significant others in the sending society’ (Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, 2015, 41 (13), 2215–2234).

ROSA MAS GIRALT is Research Fellow in Children and Family Wellbeing (Asylum & Migration) at the Centre for Applied Childhood, Youth and Family Research at the University of Huddersfield. Previously, she was a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Work, Care and Global Transitions at CIRCLE (Centre for International Research on Care, Labour and Equalities), University of Leeds. She holds a PhD in Human Geography and her research interests include onward and transnational migration, social identities and belonging, migrant and later generation children and methodological aspects of working with culturally and generationally diverse participants. She has published in the journals Children’s Geographies, Global Networks and Third World Quarterly and in edited collections on these issues.

PIOTR GOLDSTEIN is a British Academy Postdoctoral Fellow in Russian and East European Studies at the University of Manchester. He holds an MA in Philosophy from the University of Lodz, an MA in International Peace Work from the University of Trieste and PhD from the University of Manchester. After completing his PhD he was awarded a Postdoctoral Fellowship at the Institute of Sociology, University of Novi Sad, where he worked on a project assessing the role of bookshop-cafés in strengthening local civil society. Currently, based at a multi-disciplinary area-studies department, he uses methods of sociology and social anthropology to investigate the sustainability of co-operatives, social enterprises and other donor-independent civil society actors in Poland, Hungary and Serbia in comparison to their counterparts in Spain and the UK. His research interests encompass the diversity of contemporary civic activism in Eastern Europe, the role of ethnic minorities and migrants as co-creators of local civil societies and the East-West paradigm in research. He has published on Jewish student activism in Poland, narratives and practices of diversity in the Balkans, and is currently finalising the manuscript of ← 224 | 225 →his monograph Building Bridges in the Balkans: Grassroots Civil Society in a Post War Setting.

DIDI HERMAN is Professor of Law at the University of Kent. Her work explores struggles around law and rights, including by lesbian and gay social movements, the Christian Right and religious minorities. Her most recent book was An Unfortunate Coincidence: Jews, Jewishness, and English Law (2011). Earlier books include Rights of Passage: Struggles for Lesbian and Gay Legal Equality (1994); The Antigay Agenda: Orthodox Vision and the Christian Right (1997), and Globalising Family Values: The Christian Right in International Politics (with Doris Buss) (2003).

ROSEMARY PEACOCK is based at the Faculty of Health Studies at the University of Bradford. Her research explores the contributions of personal social communities to lives of people living with facial difference. She has worked as a health researcher in academia and for a range of community-based organisations on issues of health and social inequality. She also has a BSc Hons in Psychology from the University of Leeds and an MSc in Social Science Research Methodology from the Open University.

ANETA PIEKUT is a lecturer at the Sheffield Methods Institute, University of Sheffield. She holds a PhD in Sociology from the University of Warsaw (2010). Her research primarily focuses on social diversity, social inclusion, ethnic minorities’ integration and and socio-spatial segregation, utilising a mixed-method approach. She has been involved as a researcher in large European comparative projects such as ‘Mediterranean and Eastern European countries as new immigration destinations in the European Union’ (FP6, IDEA, 2007–2010, University of Warsaw) and ‘Living with Difference: Making communities out of strangers in an era of super mobility and super diversity’ (ERC, LiveDifference, 2010–2014, University of Sheffield). Currently, she is a leader of the research group ‘Diversity, Migration and Social Cohesion’ (Div/Mig/Soc) established within the IMISCOE network. Her recent publications include ‘Seeking “The New Normal”? Troubled Spaces of Encountering Visible Differences in Warsaw’ (with U.M. Vieten and G. Valentine, Polish Sociological Review, 2014) and ← 225 | 226 →‘“Other” Posts in “Other” Places: Poland through a Postcolonial Lens?’ (with L. Mayblin and G. Valentine, Sociology, 2014).

ANITA SARGEANT is Head of the School of Allied Health Professions and Sport at the University of Bradford. She is both a nurse and social scientist with interests in gender, sexuality, care delivery and service provision. Her areas of research have included palliative and end of life care, service user involvement and the role of gender within organisations. She has most recently been part of the Last Outing research team studying end of life issues for the older LGBT community across the UK. Her publications include ‘User and Community Participation at the End of Life’ (co-authored with N. Small, 2011, in M. Gott and C. Ingleton (eds), Living with Ageing and Dying: End of Life Care for Older People) and ‘Ethical and Practical Issues in Qualitative Research’ (co-authored with F. Sheldon, 2007, in J. Addington-Hall, E. Bruera, I. Higginson and S. Payne (eds), Research Methods in Palliative Care).

NEIL SMALL is Professor of Health Research at the University of Bradford. He is a sociologist with an interest in health policy and inequalities in health. He is academic lead for the longitudinal birth cohort study ‘Born in Bradford’ (, which is following up 13,500 children as they grow up in this ethnically diverse UK city. He has published widely on infant and children’s health, chronic illness and end of life care.

GILL VALENTINE is Professor of Geography at the University of Sheffield. Her research is focused around three main themes: social identities and exclusion, childhood/youth, parenting and family life; cultures of consumption. She has co-authored and co-edited fifteen books (three of which have been translated into Japanese, Chinese and Korean) and 170 articles, chapters and reports. She was one of the founding editors of the journal Social and Cultural Geography and also served as a co-editor of the journal Gender, Place and Culture. Her research has been recognised by the Royal Geographical Society/Institute of British Geographers Memorial Award and a Philip Leverhulme Prize.

← 226 | 227 →ULRIKE M. VIETEN is a Queens University Belfast Research Fellow at the Institute for the Study of Conflict Transformation and Social Justice, Queens University Belfast. Previously, she held positions at the University of Luxembourg, the University of Sheffield and the VU Amsterdam University. Her research engages theoretically and empirically with the (de-)construction and shift of racialised, classed and gendered boundaries, particularly in the context of cosmopolitanism, nationalism and citizenship. She has been an Executive Board Member of the International Sociological Association (ISA)/Research Committee on Racism, Nationalism and Ethnic Relations (RC05) since 2010. Her key publications include Revisiting Iris Marion Young on Normalisation, Inclusion and Democracy (2014), Gender and Cosmopolitanism in Europe: A Feminist Perspective (2012) and Situated Politics of Belonging (2006, co-edited with Nira Yuval-Davis and Kalpana Kannabiran).

NAOMI WELLS is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Italian Studies at the University of Warwick and s a member of the AHRC-funded project, ‘Transnationalizing Modern Languages: Mobility, Identity and Translation in Modern Italian Cultures’. She holds a PhD from the University of Leeds, and her research interests include multilingualism and language ideologies. Her current research focuses on contemporary migrant communities and practices of linguistic and cultural exchange in Italy and Spain. She has previously published in the journal Language Problems and Language Planning.

NICHOLA WOOD is a lecturer in Human Geography at the University of Leeds. Her research interests bridge social, cultural, political and emotional geographies in an attempt to study the role that emotions play in the formation and lived experience of social, cultural and political identities. Her previous work has explored the role of emotions in the (re)production of Scottish national identities. Currently, she is interested in exploring the social and political significance of the relationships between cultural practices, processes of identity formation, encounters with difference and people’s emotional attachments to particular communities. This interest ← 227 | 228 →has been developed through her participation in the European Research Council funded programme of work entitled LIVEDIFFERENCE. Her recent publications include: ‘The Persistence of Nationalism. From imagined communities to urban encounters’ (co-authored with M. Antonsich, A.-M. Fortier, J. Darling and A.C. Stephens, 2014, Political Geography, 40, pp. 56–63); ‘Deciding whose future? Challenges and opportunities of the Scottish Independence Referendum 2014 for Scotland and Beyond’ (co-authored with J. Sharp, A. Cumbers and J. Painter, 2014, Political Geography, 41, 32–42); and ‘Playing with “Scottishness”: Musical performance, non-representational thinking and the “doings” of national identity’ (2012, Cultural Geographies, 19, 195–215).