woensdag 2 juni 2010

Questions may travel...

The bad thing about the walking seminar is that, in order to participate, bodies have to be present at specific places at certain times. The good thing, however, is that the question, we discuss while walking, travel very easily. So, this is what we discussed the last times:

Writing about what it not good.

Detached. Calm. Angry. Sad. Argumentative. Empathic. Clinical. What else?

Which difference does it make whether this non-good seems irreducible (e.g. we all die) or someone’s fault (e.g. X killed Y) or puzzling (e.g. why did Y die?) or a social fact (e.g. Y lived in a country in war or with lack of food) – or something else yet again? Neglect, failure, disaster, agression, what have you...

How do you know, assess, judge, feel, find out – that in your field you hit upon something that is ‘not-good’?

What are interesting examples in the literature of ways of writing about what is not good? What makes them interesting?

And the month before:

Comparing: what is it to compare?
What do you compare with what as a part of your research?
How should that help you in answering your questions, telling your stories, etc? Does it?

What is fun/difficult/striking/surprising etc. in the work of ‘comparing’?

What difference might it make to use other terms, e.g. contrasting - or which other other term would be relevant to/in your work?

What are authors/texts in which comparison figures in a way that you particularly appreciate? In which ways do you learn from them; how do you (want to) do similar/different things?

What is it to compare and how have similarity and difference to do with this?

Dutchness as an effect of walking

‘Dutchness’ as an effect of walking

Rogier wrote that we were walking in the ‘heart of Dutchness’. But what is ‘Dutchness’? The polders? The windmill? The light?

Great work on the question on difference is currently undertaken by Amade M’charek. In looking at ‘race’ and ‘Dutchness’, she conceives of differences not as given, but as effects that come about in relational practices. In that sense, walking enacts a very specific version of ‘Dutchness’.

Vorarlberger Boden

Dutch Soil

What do you wear?

Hiking boots – all other kinds of shoes would be dangerous

Whatever you like – from hiking boots to flip flop

How do you get there?

Take the car for, at least, half an hour in order to go from 500 meters to 1000 meters or 1500 meters above sea level.

Take the train for 15 minutes.

What do you see?

In the beginning trees, later other mountain ranges, in the end the valley you will return to

A lot of sky and differences in heights of several centimetres between the polders

Which landmarks do you recognise?

Mountain tops. The real experts know all their names, of course.

Wind mills

What do you hear?

Nature: If you are lucky – and high enough – the skirling of marmots.

Culture: The mountain farmer with his tractor.

Nature: Frogs quaking in the polder.

Culture: The farmer with his tractor.

You might be disturbed by….

Mountain bikers and in the winter skiers


How you know that the end is approaching…

The air is getting warmer.

You see the train station.

How does it feel?

In the beginning challenging, you start sweating as you go up. When you reach the top, you are delighted because you achieved something.

You are walking, walking and walking. Nothing limits your sight, no woods or mountain chains. And as your gaze touches upon the horizon you feel free.