Who am I?
I am currently a PhD student in politics in the politics department of Durham University (actually I moved to King’s College London since then). I’m working on questions of engagement and space, especially how our relation to space can influence dynamics of engagement. My interests are not limited to that topic, I am also generally interested in questions of enclosure, voluntary or not (I have worked on the Palestinian refugee camps in Lebanon and on residential enclosure in the South of France). I also have a strong interest in the relations between sociology and politics, especially the pragmatic school of sociology. Otherwise, I can talk for a long time about food, comic books, and red pandas.
Why this blog?
For no particular reason, to be fair. There is no special need for this blog as I think many researchers have the occasion of talking science better than I do. The fact is, in the university world, there is no occasion of simply throwing ideas, which is something I need to do occasionally. This is my occasion of doing so and, hopefully, having reactions of people able to judge how stupid my intuitions are.
Why this title?
Okay that was a poor explanation. The goal was to do a title that would catch my research interests very quickly. The cobble was obviously a reference to space or geography, and the frame is a reference to pragmatic sociology and more specifically Erving Goffman. Since most of what I do is attempt to see what happens when you put these two things together, the title came all by itself.
Wow, what a great header picture, who did this wonder?
I’m glad you noticed it. It has been drawn for a previous blog I made (in French) by a fantastic lass who will recognise herself if she reads this page. Unfortunately, because I do not know if she agrees on it, I will not give her name or contact here. But she’s great and last time I checked was still doing nice art and pictures.
What is the link between this blog and your work?
It is weak. First this is a blog, not a AAA journal with a peer-review comitee including the specialist of the field. So what I write here is not science. It is just stuff. Of course, it has connections (especially the base rock section, which is more or less a synthesis of what I do, or parts of it, or book reviews, and stuff like that. But on average, and except if I write the contrary, what is published here is not academic work.
Why the red pandas?
The red panda is the sole living member of the Ailuridaes family. It is a great animal, that is not acknowledged as it should and is reduced to its cuteness, while it is an endangered species forgotten because of the crisis touching its giant cousin. It is not just a ginger panda, but a separate animal with its own biome, behaviour and threats. Red pandas are not only cute little guys who wander about like balls of red fur you want to cuddle and kiss, they are one of the great things evolution has brought to this world and deserve to be defended, as many other animals that are not acknowledged because of “symbols” like the giant panda or the tiger. On average, the protection of biodiversity is an extremely important cause that is not simply the valorisation of a few nice to watch animals, but the guarantee of the possibility of a life on earth. And nobody has ever seen a red panda destroying biodiversity with fur trade or chemical industry, so we should take him as an example.
I think that what you’re doing makes no sense and that your arguments are rubbish, can I kick you in the face?
Well that would be a rather unpleasant experience. But you can write a comment destroying my article, developing it, or explaining why it is rubbish. As I said earlier, this is NOT a science blog. I do have a system to filter comments, but it’s mostly so that I can keep track of what is being said here. The only comments I do not publish are the ones that are unrelated to the article.