On the Passing of a Humbling Female Geographer – Doreen Massey

Doreen Massey on Space – An Interview by Social Science Bites

“(T)o see space as a cut through the myriad stories in which we are all living at any one moment. Space and time become intimately connected.”

“If time is the dimension in which things happen one after the other, it’s the dimension of succession, then space is the dimension of things being, existing at the same time: of simultaneity. It’s the dimension of multiplicity.”

“It presents me with the existence of those friends in Latin America and that means it is space that presents us with the question of the social. And it presents us with the most fundamental of political of questions which is how are we going to live together.”

Space concerns our relations with each other and in fact social space, I would say, is a product of our relations with each other, our connections with each other. So globalization, for instance, is a new geography constructed out of the relations we have with each other across the globe.”

“What I think Occupy did which fascinated me was to create public space in a more meaningful sense because they created a space, and people didn’t just pass by each other on the way to work or shops or whatever, they talked, they conversed, they argued… (P)eople who had nothing to do with the occupation came up to me and asked questions and talked and it seemed to me that what they managed briefly to create there was a really public space, which means it was a place for the creation of a public, of politically engaged subjects if you like, of people who would talk to each other about the wider world.”

“And it seemed to me that that was a real creation of a space of the kind that we need a lot more of. A space that brings us together to talk and to argue about the kind of future world we want.”

“Geography is a very multidisciplinary discipline in that sense: we do engage a lot with sociologists and with economists. But one of the things that I like most about geography is the fact that it also includes people who are, if you like, natural scientists: people who study rivers and mountain formation and the Antarctic, and and, and… And I think there is within geography the possibility of bringing together the social and the natural sciences more than we have historically done, and there are vast differences between them, and the process is very hard, but we need to do that, I think. In an age which is faced by environmental problems such as we have, with climate change, with pollution questions, which are utterly social too, then I do think that the natural and the social sciences need to talk to each other more. And geography, maybe, is one of the places that could happenone of the reasons that I love the discipline.”

RIP Doreen Massey 😦 and may your legacy live on in all of us.