Amy Lavender Harris

Amy Lavender Harris teaches in the Department of Geography at York University, where her work focuses on urban identity and the cultural significance of place. She is the author of Imagining Toronto (Mansfield Press, 2010), which was shortlisted for the Gabrielle Roy Prize in Canadian literary criticism and won the Award of Merit, the highest honour given to a book at the 2011 Heritage Toronto Award.

GEOG 3300 Week 7: Walking Through Space

“Their story begins on ground level, with footsteps. They are myriad, but do not compose a series. They cannot be counted because each unit has a qualitative character: a style of tactile apprehension and kinesthetic appropriation. Their swarming mass is an innumerable collection of singularities. Their intertwined paths give their shape to . . . → Read More: GEOG 3300 Week 7: Walking Through Space

GEOG 4900 Class 7: Electronic Urbanity

In “A Geography of Notopia,” (City, 10:3, 317-326), Fivos Papadimitriou writes that

virtual geographical identities appear, change and disappear in transactions of a second and in the way the Buddhist philosopher assumes in its ‘pratityasamutpada,’ the theory of the instantaneous being. Entities in ‘Notopia’ circulate the globe and disappear before anyone has . . . → Read More: GEOG 4900 Class 7: Electronic Urbanity

GEOG 4900 Class 6: Corporate Shift: The Privatization of Public Space

What do the omnipresence of billboards, advertising and commodification mean for the experience, meaning and accessibility of public space? How is advertising implicated in the increasing privatization of formerly public spaces?

Are you are person who thinks you can simply ignore the onslaught of advertising in public space? What does it mean to . . . → Read More: GEOG 4900 Class 6: Corporate Shift: The Privatization of Public Space

GEOG 4900 Class 5: Regulation and Dissent: State Surveillance and Public Protest

 What does it mean to protest? What would compel you to join one — and how far would you be willing to go to support a cause you believe in? What is the utility–and what are the limits–of protest in a ‘free and democratic’ society? 

Today in the Public Space course we’ll be discussing . . . → Read More: GEOG 4900 Class 5: Regulation and Dissent: State Surveillance and Public Protest

GEOG 4900 (Public Space) Week 3: Theorizing the Public Sphere

Today in the Public Space course we’ll explore the idea of the public sphere and consider what it means to belong to a ‘public’ or counter-public and to engage in public address.

Our discussion will begin with an introduction to German philosopher Jurgen Habermas’ notions of the public sphere and will go on to . . . → Read More: GEOG 4900 (Public Space) Week 3: Theorizing the Public Sphere

GEOG 4900 (Public Space), Class 2: Exploring Public Space

“In her final year at York University, Beth became obsessed  with the washroom graffiti on campus. She loved the private conversations, the political discourse. The different colours of pen and large angry letters. Sometimes it began with something like Men don’t protect women anymore. Then a series of responses. Often daily. A . . . → Read More: GEOG 4900 (Public Space), Class 2: Exploring Public Space

Welcome to Public Space (GEOG 4900), Summer 2012 Edition!

Welcome to GEOG 4900 (Public Space), offered during the Summer 2012 term in the Geography Department at York University! 

Important updates, overviews, announcements, handouts and slides will be posted to this website before each class: please check the space regularly. Click here to view the syllabus and reading list; click . . . → Read More: Welcome to Public Space (GEOG 4900), Summer 2012 Edition!

GEOG 3300 Week 12: Possible Worlds

This week in the Space/Place course we’ll be discussing Possible Worlds: Imaginary Places and Virtual Spaces. 

We’ll explore the spatiality of utopias (also eutopias and dystopias), metaphors of imagined places, and consider how virtual spaces mediate between the real and the possible. 

Slides for today’s class are available here: GEOG 3300 Week 12 Possible . . . → Read More: GEOG 3300 Week 12: Possible Worlds

GEOG 3300 Week 11: Landscapes of Fear / Moral Geographies

This week in the Space/Place class we’ll be discussing landscapes of fear and their counterpart, moral geographies. 

Among the subjects we’ll discuss: what makes a place frightening?’ To what extent may our fears of certain places be attributed to ‘natural’ (or ‘reasonable’) fears and to what extent are these ‘dangerous’ spaces socially produced? Can . . . → Read More: GEOG 3300 Week 11: Landscapes of Fear / Moral Geographies

GEOG 3300 Week 10: Individual Consultation Day

Just a reminder that, as announced via email, today’s Space/Place class will be set aside for individual consultations for students seeking feedback or research help on research paper topics (please remember that the essay outline and annotated bibliography are due next week). 

If you would like help with your essay, please met at the . . . → Read More: GEOG 3300 Week 10: Individual Consultation Day