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dc.contributor.advisorBlackshaw, Tony; Carr, Neil
dc.contributor.authorBingham, Kevin Peter
dc.date.available2017-11-05T20:26:52Z
dc.date.copyright2017
dc.identifier.citationBingham, K. P. (2017). Unpacking Heterotopic Social Space: An Ethnography of Urban Exploration (Thesis, Doctor of Philosophy). University of Otago. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/10523/7684en
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10523/7684
dc.description.abstractUrban exploration has emerged as the popular term used to describe the physical exploration of human-made structures and objects, particularly those that are abandoned or hidden from the public eye. In recent years it has received growing academic attention and has been examined in the current literature as a leisure form which produces a posture of authenticity that rejects commoditisation in its celebration of rebellion. While this work is certainly a useful and valuable start, it is evident that there is a distinct lack of critical research and many fundamental oversights as urban exploration is removed from its real contexts. This thesis takes the study of this phenomenon in a different direction by focusing its attention straight at the living and breathing individuals who call themselves urban explorers to lay bare a unique leisure world. Using as its starting point Foucault’s (1984) concept of heterotopia which is said to operate somewhere between the everyday world and the imaginary, this thesis unpacks the heterotopic social space of a group of urban explorers known as WildBoyz. At the same time, it takes into account the inescapable period of interregnum we currently find ourselves in. This is to move beyond the limits of extant studies by considering the shift into a world dominated by consumer capitalism, and the present social, cultural and political context in which urban exploration takes place. With this in mind, the thesis is an ethnographic investigation that combines the methods of hermeneutic sociology and sociological hermeneutics to enter a heterotopic social space which, including the researcher, comprised nine key individuals from North East England. By doing this, the thesis effectively delves into this heterotopia, and all of its quixotic qualities, of a group of urban explorers by unpacking how they control cognitive, aesthetic and moral social space, the life strategies they individually adopt and the significance of the ‘virtual’ as a further extension of their heterotopic world. In the end, what this nuanced perspective tells the reader is that a new way of understanding urban exploration has been developed, and this is one that views a particular kind of heterotopic reality as being a form of ‘devotional leisure’ (Blackshaw, 2017). In other words, this thesis offers instructive and comprehensive insights into the possibilities of freedom, the significance of performativity and the machinations of very particular type of ‘home’ that cannot help but always be temporary and on the move.
dc.format.mimetypeapplication/pdf
dc.language.isoen
dc.publisherUniversity of Otago
dc.rightsAll items in OUR Archive are provided for private study and research purposes and are protected by copyright with all rights reserved unless otherwise indicated.
dc.subjectUrbanExploration
dc.subjectUrbex
dc.subjectSociology
dc.subjectLeisure
dc.subjectWildBoyz
dc.subjectHeterotopia
dc.subjectFoucault
dc.subjectHeterotopicSocialSpace
dc.subjectBauman
dc.subjectBlackshaw
dc.titleUnpacking Heterotopic Social Space: An Ethnography of Urban Exploration
dc.typeThesis
dc.date.updated2017-11-02T23:30:59Z
dc.language.rfc3066en
thesis.degree.disciplineDepartment of Tourism
thesis.degree.nameDoctor of Philosophy
thesis.degree.grantorUniversity of Otago
thesis.degree.levelDoctoral
otago.openaccessOpen
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