Dr. Elisabeth Militz

Postdoc

Social and Cultural Geography

Phone
+41 31 631 86 05
E-Mail
elisabeth.militz@giub.unibe.ch
Office
315
Postal Address
University of Bern
Institute of Geography
Social and Cultural Geography
Hallerstrasse 12
CH-3012 Bern
Consultation Hour
Monday, 15:30-16:30

I am a feminist political and cultural geographer exploring affect and emotion. My research brings together feminist political geographic scholarship, feminist affect theory, feminist STS, geographies of the body, psychoanalytic geographies and empirical case studies from Azerbaijan, Kyrgyzstan and Switzerland.

Departing from an intersectional research perspective my work seeks to understand the ways in which spaces of intimacy, emotions and everyday experiences of nation, nationalism and belonging intertwine. In my doctoral dissertation, I developed the concept of affective nationalism to examine the ways in which feelings of national belonging unfold through banal encounters between different bodies, objects, practices and places. The concept of the global intimate (Mountz & Hyndman 2006), connecting intimate experiences with global flows of bodies, technologies and knowledge, guides my postdoctoral research on the affectual geographies and reproductive rights of hymenoplasty. Here, I am, for example focusing on the role social media (such as Instagram) play in enabling alternative spaces of knowledge production and alternative knowledge about reproductive and sexual health and rights.

I enjoy experimenting with qualitative and ethnographic research methodologies in geography. I have developed a particular interest in exploring the limits, possibilities  and challenges of affectual methodologies.

Fields of Research

  • Emotions and affects
  • Geographies of the body
  • Intimate spaces in social media
  • Intimate surgery
  • Global Intimate
  • Affective Nationalism
  • Affectual Methodology

Education

since 2018 Postdoc in Social and Cultural Geography, University of Bern
2018 Postdoc with the Feminist Geography Collective, University of Texas at Austin
2017-2018 Postdoc at Transcultural Studies, University of St. Gallen
2015 Visiting PhD candidate at the Department of Geography, University of Kentucky, Lexington
2013-2017 PhD at the Geography Graduate School Zurich, University of Zürich
2005-2006 Exchange student University of Massachusetts, Boston
2003-2010 BA and MA in geography (minors: sociology, anthropology, biology), Heidelberg University

Professional career

since 2018 Research assistant and lecturer in Social and Cultural Geography, University of Bern
2016-2018 Research assistant and lecturer at Transcultural Studies, University of St. Gallen
2013-2016 Research assistant at Space & Organization, University of Zürich
2011-2013 Research assistant and lecturer in Economic Geography, University of Jena
2012 Visiting Scholar at the Azerbaijan Tourism Institut, Baku
2010-2011 Lecturer of the Robert Bosch Foundation, State Agricultural University of Azerbaijan
2010 Lecturer at the Department of Geography, University of Heidelberg

Affiliations and memberships

  • American Association of Geographers
  • AK Geography and Gender
  • DFG Network Feminist Geographies of the New Materialism
  • Feminist Geography Collective at UT Austin
  • MitOst

 

Twitter: @ElisabethMilitz

2019

Militz, Elisabeth. "Towards affective Nationalism." Gender, Place and Culture, 2019. https://doi.org/10.1080/0966369X.2018.1484704.

Militz, Elisabeth, und Karine Duplan. „A Space for Feminist Geographies at the 16th Swiss Geoscience Meeting“. GeoAgenda 2019, Nr. 1 (2019): 26–29.

2018

Schurr, Carolin, and Elisabeth Militz. ‘The Affective Economy of Transnational Surrogacy’. Environment and Planning A online first (2018): 1–20. https://doi.org/10.1177/0308518X18769652.

Militz, Elisabeth. ‘Feministische Geographien: Ankommen, Wohlfühlen und Weiterkommen.’  Feministisches Geo-RundMail 77 (Oktober 2018). http://ak-geographie-geschlecht.org/rundmail.

Klosterkamp, Sarah, and Elisabeth Militz, eds. ‘Feministische Politische Geographie’. Feministische Geo-RundMail 75 (April 2018). http://ak-geographie-geschlecht.org/rundmail/.

2017

Militz, Elisabeth. ‘Affective Nationalism: Bodies, Materials and Encounters with the Nation in Azerbaijan’. PhD dissertation, University of Zurich, 2017.

Militz, Elisabeth. ‘On Affect, Dancing and National Bodies’. In Everyday Nationhood: Theorising Culture, Identity and Belonging after Banal Nationalism, edited by Michael Skey and Marco Antonsich, 177–95. London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2017. https://doi.org/10.1057/978-1-137-57098-7_9.

Militz, Elisabeth, and Diana Griesinger. ‘Book Review: Visuelle Geographien: Zur Produktion, Aneignung Und Vermittlung von RaumBildern’. Geographica Helvetica 72, no. 1 (22 March 2017): 137–40. https://doi.org/10.5194/gh-72-137-2017.

2016

Militz, Elisabeth, and Carolin Schurr. ‘Affective Nationalism: Banalities of Belonging in Azerbaijan’. Political Geography, Special Issue: Banal Nationalism 20 years on, 54 (1 September 2016): 54–63. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.polgeo.2015.11.002.

Militz, Elisabeth. ‘Public Events and Nation-Building in Azerbaijan’. In Nation-Building and Identity in the Post-Soviet Space: New Tools and Approaches, edited by Rico Isaacs and Abel Polese, 176–94. Post-Soviet Politics. London, New York: Routledge, 2016.

Becoming a virgin: bodies, technologies and affectual geographies of the reconstruction of the hymen

Duration 2017-2019
Description The project hypothesizes hymen repair as an emergent transcultural phenomenon that reproduces female virginity as a global commodity. It explores how technologies of hymen surgery produce corporeal geographies, putting sexualized organs and bodies into circulation as commodities in the global reproductive economy. Specifically, the project is interested in unraveling the different emotional and affectual mechanisms substantiating powerful narratives around virginity, femininity, female sexuality and pleasure.

Clad in hope: affective geographies of the bridal dress

Duration 2018
Funding SNF Scientific Exchange
Description Despite an observed decline in marriage rates, the heterosexual wedding remains popular around the world. While many communities grant the status of an adult only after consummating a heterosexual wedding, marriage also seems to promise future happiness. The white bridal dress, in particular, plays a key role in attracting feelings of hope, desire and joy during wedding celebrations. This project aims to develop a critical understanding of the affective dynamics at play in conflating marriage with happiness.

Collaborators

Prof. Dr. Caroline Faria, University of Texas at Austin
Dominica Whitesell, University of Texas at Austin
Links https://universityoftexas.wixsite.com/femgeogcollective

Affective Nationalism: Bodies, Materials and Encounters with the Nation in Azerbaijan

Duration 2013-2017
Funding Forschungskredit Universität Zürich
Description The project unpacks the ways in which nationalism – understood as a feeling of national belonging and alienation – unfolds in moments of affective encounter between different bodies, objects, practices and places. Based on eight months of ethnographic field work in Azerbaijan, consisting mainly of observant participation within families, field notes from attendance at public holidays and commemoration ceremonies and qualitative interviews, the project develops the concept of affective nationalism - the banal affirmation of the national emerging in moments of encounter between different bodies, objects, practices and places. In times nationalist and populist narratives of good and evil, right and wrong and outside and inside gain ground, the project proposes to focus on moments of bodily encounter, on bodies’ different capacities to affect and to be affected and on the spatial and temporal contextualities of national becomings, in order to understand the persistence of nationalism.
Collaborators Prof. Dr. Martin Müller, Université de Lausanne
Prof. Dr. Anna Secor, University of Kentucky
Links http://www.research-projects.uzh.ch/p21647.htm
Output Militz, Elisabeth. ‘Affective Nationalism: Bodies, Materials and Encounters with the Nation in Azerbaijan’. PhD dissertation, University of Zurich, 2017.

Militz, Elisabeth. ‘On Affect, Dancing and National Bodies’. In Everyday Nationhood: Theorising Culture, Identity and Belonging after Banal Nationalism, edited by Michael Skey and Marco Antonsich, 177–95. London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2017. https://doi.org/10.1057/978-1-137-57098-7_9.

Militz, Elisabeth, and Carolin Schurr. ‘Affective Nationalism: Banalities of Belonging in Azerbaijan’. Political Geography, Special Issue: Banal Nationalism 20 years on, 54 (1 September 2016): 54–63. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.polgeo.2015.11.002.

Militz, Elisabeth. ‘Public Events and Nation-Building in Azerbaijan’. In Nation-Building and Identity in the Post-Soviet Space: New Tools and Approaches, edited by Rico Isaacs and Abel Polese, 176–94. Post-Soviet Politics. London, New York: Routledge, 2016.

Spaces of freedom in Azerbaijan: an action-oriented network analysis of environmental NGOs

Duration 2009-2010
Funding DAAD
Hiele Stiftung
Description The project focuses the practices, organisation and guiding narratives of environmental NGOs in the South Caucasus Republic of Azerbaijan. Drawing primarily on ethnographic and qualitative interview material from four month of field research, the study experiments with a qualitative network analysis and presents novel insights on civil society activities in the fields of nature conversation, ornithology and environmental justice in Azerbaijan.
Collaborators Prof. Dr. Heiko Schmid †
Output Militz, Elisabeth. ‘Zivilgesellschaftliche Freiräume in Umwelt-NGOs in Aserbaidschan: Eine Netzwerkanalyse’. In: Rückkehr zum Autoritarismus? Vormoderne, Moderne und Postmoderne im postsozialistischen Europa. Beiträge für die 19. Tagung Junger Osteuropa-Experten, edited by Apelt, B. & I. Hahn. Bremen: Forschungsstelle Osteuropa, 59-60, 2011.

Militz, Elisabeth. ‘Spaces of freedom in Azerbaijan: an action-oriented network analysis of environmental NGOs’, Department of Geography, Heidelberg University, 2010 (unpublished diploma thesis).

 

Selection since 2017

2018  
April "Geographies of Beauty", AAG 2018 New Orleans
April (with Carolin Schurr) “Complicating (Un)Comfortable Alliances in the Brave New World of Reproduction”, AAG 2018 New Orleans
2017  
November "Affektiver Nationalismus: Zur Entstehung nationaler Gemeinschaftsgefühle am Beispiel Aserbaidschans", Geography Colloquium, University of Münster  
October (with Carolin Schurr) "Transcorporeal Geographies", DKG 2017, Tübingen
September (with Carolin Schurr) "Zugänge: Emotionale Geographie als Forschungspraxis", KKG 2017, Türbingen
April "Close the gap: corporeal geographies of hymen reconstruction", AAG 2018 Boston

 

Selection since 2017

2018  
September (with Sarah Klosterkamp) "Affectual Methodologies" and "Affect and Emotion as key concepts of feminist geographies", Workshops at the Human Geography Summerschool Gender & Space, Herzberg
April (with Carolin Schurr) "Author meets Readers: Stacy Alaimo’s (2016) Exposed: Environmental Politics and Pleasures in Posthuman Times", Panel at the AAG 2018, New Orleans
2017  
November (with Christoph Creutziger and Sarah Klosterkamp) "Affects, Emotions and Geographies writing", Workshop at the Department of Geography, University of Münster
April (with Hannah Lyons) "The power of enchantment: exploring the affective entanglements between bodies, objects and space in constituting national identifications", Panel at the AAG 2018, Boston
March (with Carolin Schurr) "Transcultural Bodies: Geographies of Embodiment", Workshop, University of St. Gallen

Current Teaching

Spring 2019 Proseminar "Digital Geographies of the global/intimate" (with Carolin Schurr and Mario Sturny)

Past Teaching

Fall 2018 MA Seminar "Political Geographies of Emotion and Affect"
Fall 2018 MA Lecture "Kulturgeographie II: Theorien der Sozial- und Kulturgeographie nach dem Cultural Turn" (with Marina Richter)
Fall 2017 BA Seminar "Economies of Beauty: transcultural corpreal aesthetic between marketing and cosmetic surgery", University of St. Gallen
Spring 2017 MA Seminar "Love/ hate: The transcultural politics of emotions" (with Carolin Schurr), University of St. Gallen
Fall 2016 MA Seminar "Culture, Mobility and Space" (with Carolin Schurr), University of St. Gallen
Spring 2016 BA Tutorial Small Group Teaching "Globalization", University of Zürich
Fall 2014 BA Tutorial Small Group Teaching "Global Uncertainty", University of Zürich
Spring 2013 BA Seminar "Cultural Geography I", University of Jena
Fall 2012 MA Seminar "Cultural Geography II", University of Jena
Fall 2012 BA Seminar "Migration, urban infrastructures and transnational mobilities" (with Julia Rösch), University of Jena
Fall 2012 Excursion Genoa (5 days), University of Jena
Fall 2011 MA Seminar "Cultural Geography II" (with Karsten Gäbler), University of Jena
Fall 2011 BA Seminar "Economic Geography III" (with Manuel Meier), University of Jena
Spring 2010 Excursion "Cultural Geographies of Upper Bavaria: beyond laptops and Lederhosen" (with Julia Rösch), University of Heidelberg