Walking Heterotopias

Renedo Illarregi, Erika (2019). Walking Heterotopias. In: The Design Journal, 22(sup1) pp. 2307–2312.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/14606925.2019.1595041


The purpose of this walk is to stir dialogue among conference attendees and also others who currently have, or have had experiences of mental health problems, recruited for participation via a local mental health organization. In essence, the idea is to wander around the city in pairs, guided by conceptual maps as props or co-reflection tools, in order to discuss current notions around mental distress in an embedded way, through the walking. In 1967, Foucault spoke about heterotopias of crisis and heterotopias of deviation, thus places in which individuals whose behaviour is deviant in relation to the required mean or norm were placed, such as psychiatric hospitals. Now that these spaces are disappearing, how can we reconceptualise crisis and deviation? We experiment this through asking participants: What are the moments or instances that come to mind when we walk through the city, which relate to our notions and experiences of crisis and deviation?

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