JoyceWalks: remapping culture as tactical space

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  • JoyceWalks: remapping culture as tactical space

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  • Abstract

    This paper will discuss JoyceWalks, a participatory locative art project which uses Google Maps to remap routes from James Joyce’s Ulysses to any city in the world. The project is web based using the Google Maps API to remap these  routes from Dublin to any other city and to generate walking maps which are then used as the basis of Situationist inspired psychogeographical dérives.

    This paper will argue that JoyceWalks acts as a tool through which participant action can be used to generate critical spatial knowledges of the urban environment. Through a structured mechanism of remapping spatially expressed cultural tropes such as (but not limited to) the Bloomsday celebrations in Dublin, the project questions the spatial commodification of culture as part of what Sharon Zukin calls the symbolic economy of cities (1995) and it’s implied fragmentation of space into zones of culture and zones of what presumably can be described as ‘non-culture’. My proposal is that JoyceWalks offers a mechanism for (re)mappings of cultural space in cities which privileges the social relationships of cultural production over the spatial, and in the process offers an expandable set of procedures for generating Situationist inspired explorations of urban space. I suggest that JoyceWalks produces ephemeral tactical spaces which are actuated by the user/participants and that this form, the ‘tactical toolkit’ as it were, represents an effective method for the interrogation of urban space.