Pressing Pause, “Doing” Feminist Mapping
Keywords:Feminist mapping, critical GIS, reflexivity, positionality, feminist methods, feminist toolkit
Maps have long been understood to be embedded within structures of power that differentially privilege and oppress. In traditional workflows, however, considerations of power are often difficult to represent in the map and fail to include considerations of power tied to the mapmaker. As such, we invite mapmakers of all backgrounds and skill sets to “press pause” on traditional workflows to incorporate feminist considerations and representations of power and position. We begin by reviewing reflexivity and exploring the ways it enables deep engagement with systems of privilege and oppression. We then situate reflexivity as the foundation of a feminist toolkit for “doing” feminist mapping, a toolkit that calls mapmakers to explore the multiple planes of the matrix of domination (interpersonal, hegemonic, disciplinary, structural) in the five design justice areas (values, practices, narratives, sites, and pedagogies). In particular, we explore the opportunities afforded by reflexivity taken up in written, audio, and visual practices and highlight the work of scholars and practitioners working through these modalities. It is our hope that a commitment to more holistic considerations of power in mapping lead to the establishment of a more equitable and just world.
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