Beyond the Map: Unruly enclaves, ghostly places, emerging lands and our search for new utopias
Geography is getting stranger. Out there fleets of new islands are under construction and eye-wateringly insane micro-nations are struggling into the light; unseen rivers are tumbling under sleeping cites and once secret fantasy- gardens are cracking open their doors. As groups like Islamic State fabricate proto-states whose boundaries ebb and flow with each passing day, it certainly feels as if all the old maps are being frantically scribbled over or torn up. The world's unruly places, the zones unmarked on any official map, are multiplying and changing fast.In this book, Alaistair Bonnet presents the stories of 43 of these extraordinary places, all of which will challenge the very concept of place. The ever more unruly maps of human and physical geography can seem overwhelming. Perhaps that's why little places, the small secrets, the hidden surprises, have become so important. Alastair will set out on a journey across the world in search of a diverse range of modern utopias, from the Dubai Shopping Mall to the caliphate of the Islamic State, from the Findhorn eco-community in Scotland to Cybertopias such as Second Life.Follows in the great tradition of writing on place and what it tells us about ourselves and the world, and our previous success with Off the Map. Off the Map was very well reviewed and received - would be great title for coverage in national newspapers, and their magazines. Alastair is available for publicity and would be great for radio interviews, for Radio 4 programmes and debates.
"Full of rich, strange anecdote, Beyond the Map skips restlessly around the globe... This fine book is an expert, engaged guide to how one might begin to start mapping these often perplexing processes." * Prospect magazine *
ALASTAIR BONNETT is Professor of Social Geography at Newcastle University. Previous books include Off the Map (2013), What is Geography? (Sage, 2008) and How to Argue (Pearson, 2001). He has also contributed to history and current affairs magazines on a wide variety of topics, such as world population and radical nostalgia. Alastair was editor of the avant-garde, psychogeographical, magazine Transgressions: A Journal of Urban Exploration between 1994-2000. He was also involved for many years in situationist and anarchist politics. His latest research projects are about memories of the city and themes of loss and yearning in modern politics.