Street ambiance, protest and political experiences in Kiev, Ukraine

Authors: Perrine Poupin*, EHESS
Topics: Political Geography, Urban Geography, Eurasia
Keywords: Political geography, Ambiences, protest, Ukraine, qualitative methods
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/5/2019
Start / End Time: 3:05 PM / 4:45 PM
Room: Regency Ballroom, Omni, West
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


Study of street actions provides a detailed analysis of the political life including its spatial and embodied aspects. These dimensions remained for a long time largely unresearched in sociology of collective action (Benford Robert, 1997 ; Jasper James M. et Lynn Owens, 2014, Sewell William, 2001). Now they are better taken into account, notably through research in geography (Miller Byron, 2000 ; Nicholls Walter, Miller Byron et Justine Beaumont, 2013). Protest actions are distributed and situated activities whose ressources are taken within surrounding space and its sensitive modalities (sound, light, smells, warmth, coldness). Urban areas and urban ambiances are seen here as part of collective action, and vice versa. This is what ecological approach is about (Pecqueux Anthony, 2012 ; Thibaud Jean-Paul et Cristiane Rose Duarte, 2013). Through few specific cases, which were studied at micro-levels and using video materials, I propose to analyse some political experiences on the central square of Kiev, since 2013. My framework closely links the public character of the urban areas to its ambiances and activities (Joseph Isaac, 1997 ; Lofland Lyn, 1998 ; Relieu Marc et Cédric Terzi, 2003). In this perspective, physical public space matters to democracy (PARKINSON John, 2012). In other words, the concern is to assess the ongoing process of democratization and publicization of urban spaces in Ukraine, in the context of revolution and war.

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