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Mapping grief: a conceptual framework for understanding the spatial dimensions of bereavement, mourning and remembrance

Maddrell, A. ORCID: (2016) Mapping grief: a conceptual framework for understanding the spatial dimensions of bereavement, mourning and remembrance. Social and Cultural Geography, 17 (2). pp. 166-188. ISSN 1470-1197

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1080/14649365.2015.1075579


This paper highlights the significance of the spatial dimensions of the universal human phenomena of bereavement. Grief, mourning and remembrance are experienced in and mapped upon (i) physical spaces, including the public and private arenas of everyday life; (ii) the embodied-psychological spaces of the interdependent and co-producing body-mind and (iii) the virtual spaces of digital technology, religious-spiritual beliefs and non-place-based community. Culturally inflected, dynamic emotional-affective maps of grief can be identified, as a form of deep-mapping,which reflect the ways in which relationality to particular spaces and places is inflected by bereavement, mourning and remembrance. Individual’s emotional-affective cartographies can intersect, overlap, or conflict with, others’ maps, with social and political consequences. The conceptual framework outlined here is illustrated by a schematic representation of grief maps. This framework provides geographical scholars with a lens on the dynamic assemblage of self-body-place-society that constitutes culturally inflected individual and shared everyday grief maps, providing insight to relational spaces, emotional-affective geographies and therapeutic environments. The reflexive identification of such maps represents a potential resource for the bereaved and their therapeutic counsellors, facilitating the identification of places which evoke anguish or comfort etc. and which might be deemed emotionally ‘safe’ or ‘unsafe’ at particular junctures.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:No Reading authors. Back catalogue items
Science > School of Archaeology, Geography and Environmental Science > Department of Geography and Environmental Science
ID Code:70268
Publisher:Taylor & Francis


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