Who’s afraid of the built environment? – Mapping the relations of nonhuman elements, gender, race and discourse in urban spaces of fear.

Urban spaces of fear have been a research subject of feminist urban studies since the 1980s. Those studies often dismissed approaches, which focused on the urban built environment because the root causes of urban fear, and urban crime cannot be located in nonhuman elements like buildings, streetlights or surveillance cameras. Following newer concepts which explicitly take the nonhuman into account when analyzing social situations, this talk offers insights into the ‘black box’ of the actual process of doing research in a contested field. How can we analyze spaces in all their complexity, including human actors, nonhuman elements, discourses, socio-cultural and political elements? How can we understand the production of knowledge as a political act? With the help of Adele Clarke’s Situational Analysis (2012), a recent approach in the sphere of qualitative research methods, we dive into these questions and discover how mapping-strategies can serve as helpful tools for complex, situated and relational analysis.

Sonja Gaedicke is an interdisciplinary scholar currently finishing her phd thesis about the situatedness of urban spaces of fear from an intersectional-feminist perspective at RWTH Aachen University, Germany. Her work bridges epistemological and methodological traditions from sociology and urban gender studies to explore the nexus of gender, race, built artifacts and discourse in the arena of public urban spaces. As an intellectual activist, Sonja is interested in the intersections of academic knowledge production and activism. During the last 9 years, Sonja has worked as a lecturer and researcher at RWTH Aachen University, the German Sport University Cologne and at TH Köln where she taught inter- and transdisciplinary courses on Gender and Diversity in MINT, social inequality in sports and introductory courses on Gender Studies as well as on Gender and Design. Sonja has worked in projects focusing on research about sexual violence in elite sports and the inclusion of gender perspectives in different fields of study and research.


The talk will be held in English via zoom:

Meeting-ID: 874 7755 2378
Passcode: KISD