No. 24 (2009): The Cultural Production and Negotiation of Borders
Nordlit 24 presents papers that were all first given at the 2008 European Conference of the Association of Borderlands Studies, held in Kirkenes in Northern Norway, September 11–13, 2008, on the borders of the Arctic and in the ‘Finnish–Kven–Norwegian–Russian–Sámi’ borderland. […] The theme of the conference was a wide one: the ‘Cultural Production and Negotiation of Borders’. This theme was intended as an acknowledgement of the increasing focus which has been given recently by geographers and historians to the role of cultural production and negotiation in social and territorial bordering processes. The ongoing spate of movies, documentaries, art projects, novels, websites, festivals and tourist attractions concerning borders has given this aspect of bordering renewed topicality and economic importance, and has attracted research both in the humanities and in the social sciences. […] The essays in this issue of Nordlit focus on how historical and contemporary border discourses, expressive and æsthetic representations, are generated, circulated, and interpreted in both local and global contexts. We have also sought to include material that raises questions about the nature of æsthetic discourses and how their specific form of intervention, production and negotiation, works through various forms of representational displacement, with the border not always being described in a directly recognizable or transparent way. These displacements include narrative, fictional, and figural re-inscriptions of the border. Æsthetic discourses thus make discussion of imaginary and symbolic borderlands necessary, often emphasizing the layers of memory in the ‘borderscape’. Within a discursive approach to borders it is important to acknowledge the role displacement has to play in the cultural production and formation of borders, even territorial borderlands such as the one in which the conference was set. Have a pleasant read.