Chorographies Symposium 2017

Traditions and Trajectories in the Spatial Humanities

15-16 June 2017, Lancaster University

Chorography is a tradition of cultural inquiry that uses geography as a framework for considering the relationship between the present and the past. The purpose of the symposium was to explore chorography as a theoretical and methodological approach and to consider its relevance to current trends in geographically informed humanities scholarship. The symposium brought together perspectives from historians, geographers, and literary scholars. Collectively, we explored classic chorographical texts and key locations, as well as more recent examples, to consider how chorographical practices can inform new approaches and resources for humanities research.


Thursday, 15 June

1.30pm: Registration & Welcome

 2:00-3:30pm: Panel 1: Heritage Contexts (Chair: Professor Ian Gregory)

Dr Andrew Roberts & Dr Megan Leyland (English Heritage), ‘Chorography and the Heritage Landscape’

Dr Leif Isaksen (Lancaster University), ‘The Enclosure on Cluny Hill, Forres: Historiography and Fieldwork’

Prof Roey Sweet (University of Leicester), ‘Antiquarianism and Topography and the Construction of a Region’

3:30–4:00pm: Coffee/Tea Break

4:00-5:15pm: Plenary 1 (Chair: Dr Christopher Donaldson)

Prof Richard Hingley (Durham University), ‘Chorographies of the Frontier: An Archaeology of Border Walls’

With a response by Professor Michael Shanks (Stanford)

5:30-6:30pm: Poetry Reading

Prof Paul Farley, readings from The People’s Poly-Olbion

7:30pm: Dinner

Meeting House Restaurant, 11-17 Meeting House Lane, Lancaster LA1 1TJ

Friday, 16 June

9:00-10:30am: Panel 2: Early Modern Contexts (Chair: Dr James Butler)

Dr Liz Oakley-Brown (Lancaster University), ‘Sensational Chorographies in Early Modern England’

Dr Daniel Cattell (University of Exeter), ‘“First in this kinde”: The Curious Case of the “Topo-chrono-graphicall” Poly-Olbion (1612, 1622)’

Prof James Loxley (Edinburgh University), ‘Chorography on the Edge: National Borders in Drayton’s Poly-Olbion

10:30–11:00am: Coffee/Tea Break

11:00am-12:30pm: Panel 3: Modern Contexts (Chair: Professor Sally Bushell)

Dr Darrel Rohl (Canterbury Christ Church University), ‘The Chorographic Tradition’

Dr Alex Deans (Glasgow University), ‘“Still to be traced on the spot”: Collaborative Chorography in Thomas Pennant’s Scottish Tours’

Prof Damian Walford-Davies (Cardiff University), ‘Chorographies vs/and Archipelagos: Ronald Lockley’s Island Imagination’


1:30-3:00pm: Panel 4: ‘Deep’ Mapping (Chair: Alex Reinhold)

Dr Martin Dodge (University of Manchester), ‘A Kind of Deeping Mapping of the City: Infrastructural Urbanism, Indexical Knowledges and Cartographic Chronology’

Dr Kieron Smith (Cardiff University), ‘Digital Chorographies: Deep Mapping Welsh Novels on the Digital Literary Atlas of Wales’

Alex Butler & Catherine Berry (Adam Matthews Digital), ‘Building Digital Maps for Primary Source Teaching and Research’

3:00–3:30pm: Coffee/Tea Break

3:30-4:45pm: Plenary 2 (Chair: Dr Joanna Taylor)

Dr Julia Carlson (Cincinnati), ‘Cartopoetics’

4.45pm: Closing remarks