From Social and Cultural Geography journal, pre-publication on-line version:
‘Enclosing difference and disruption: assemblage, heterotopia and the cruise ship’ by Jonathan Rankin and Francis Collins.
The cruise ship is as much a process as an object. Indeed, while the ship appears stable in its material and affective form, this state is maintained only through the interventions of a vast array of human and non-human agencies. The cascading affects flowing from these interactions allow for alternative sociomaterial orders to be established through the suspension and splintering of fixed notions of time and space. This paper brings the theories of heterotopia and assemblage together, through a speculative realist ontology, to explore these temporal and spatial discontinuities, and the way they can create a sense of enclosure amongst passengers on-board. This theoretical approach is utilized to examine articulations of the cruise ship in the self-solicited blog entries of passengers that demonstrate both the mutable and emergent qualities of the ship and the way in which its seeming enclosure is subject to constant disruption. Rather than a static reading of the ship as a heterotopic ‘other space’, we propose that these spatial configurations are vulnerable to entropic forces and unruly agencies that frame the cruise ship as an emerging, rather than realized object, affording it the potential to enact alternative sociomaterial orders.
11 May 2016