Publication details for Dr Christopher HarkerHarker, C. On (not) forgetting families: family spaces and spacings in Birzeit, Palestine. Environment and Planning A. 2010;42:2624–2639.
- Publication type: Journal papers: academic
- ISSN/ISBN: 0308-518X, 1472-3409
- DOI: 10.1068/a4338
- View online: Online version
- Durham research online: DRO record
Author(s) from Durham
This paper is a response to Valentine’s (2008) recent suggestion that the family is an absent presence within Geography. Persuaded by her argument, I explore other disciplinary approaches to theorizing families, and in particular how discursive appropriations of ‘the family’ and theories of family practices can enlarge our understandings of what families are and how they are done. I then argue that geographers can contribute to such studies by exploring the spaces and spacings that co-constitute family subjectivities. I put these ideas to work in the context of Birzeit, Palestine, where I argue particular family spaces and spacings offer more nuanced understandings of this place, which challenge limited discursive constructions of the ‘Arab family’ and the ‘Western family. I situate these theoretical maneuvers within broader geographies of intimacies, while arguing that there is still a great deal of work to be done to further spatialize our understandings of families.