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Gregory, Derek (1951-)

  • By: Barney Warf
  • In: Encyclopedia of Geography
  • Edited by: Barney Warf
  • Subject:General Geography, Earth & Environmental Science

Derek Gregory is one of contemporary human geography's leading theoreticians. His early career was marked by critiques of location theory, spatial diffusion, and humanistic geography. In the 1980s, he introduced geographers to Anthony Giddens's theory of structuration, linking it to the tradition of time-geography. He also injected social theory into historical geography, including studies of the uneven spatiality of class struggle in England during the Industrial Revolution. Such studies of the origins of modernity enticed geographers to unveil its historically specific nature and reveal it as a particular power-knowledge configuration.

Gregory's exploration of postmodernism, including its general distrust of broad, overarching theoretical paradigms, raised the importance of spatiality to new heights: Geographies, he insisted, are not simply passive reflections of some aspatial social structure; rather, space ...

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