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Title: Geographie passionnelle : the utopian practices and knowledges of the Paris group of the contemporary surrealist movement
Author: Fenton, Jill Mary.
Awarding Body: Royal Holloway, University of London
Current Institution: Royal Holloway, University of London
Date of Award: 2005
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This thesis is about contemporary surrealism in Paris. Surrealism is a magnetic field that attracts individuals wishing to engage in a collective adventure, as well as those who choose to remain outside of the collective yet organise pursuits of an intrinsically surrealist nature. In particular, this thesis focuses on the cultural geographies of contemporary surrealism in Paris by exploring the intellectual, creative, esoteric and revolutionary-poetical practices that compose a surrealist everyday life and engagement with the city. The thesis draws on and extends recent interest in alternative geographical imaginations, urban utopianism and forms of creative resistance and is structured through the following themes: surrealists' mapping of places of attraction and repulsion, utopia and dystopia in Paris, their surrational re-enchanting of the contemporary city; surrealist practices that engage with sidereal geography, astrology and alchemy and reveal new ways of theorising the unconscious city; surrealist creative, strategic and collaborative acts of resistance, that are revolutionary-poetical; surrealist exploration of the contemporary city in the form of a game of derive and two interventions that enact radical, new know ledges of space and alternative urban geographies. The thesis is based on an ethnography that has involved mutual intellectual exchange and observant participation, evident in the surrealists' and my own interest in exploring Ernst Bloch's theoretical thinking on utopia in The Principle of Hope and its relation to the utopian characteristics of surrealist interventions and everyday re-enchantment of the city. Through its attention to possibilities it explores the ways in which surrealist spatial practices evoke Bloch's concept of excedent utopique in terms of what surrealists inherit from their own history, their sense of the city's past, and in relation to the hope they evoke for the future. This is the nature of their geographie passionnelle.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available