What is Schizocartography?

I have developed schizocartography from the psychoanalyst Félix Guattari’s term “schizoanalytic cartography”. Schizocartography enables alternative existential modes for individuals in order to challenge dominant representations and power structures. This provides an opportunity for multiple ways of operating in space and reading the environment; it critiques the conventional ways of viewing, interpreting and mapping space. While the term “schizoanalysis” is derived from “schizophrenia”, it does not promote mental illness; rather, “schizo” is used as a way of offering up the possibility of multiple voices, and alternative world-views, amongst other factors.

This is my definition of ‘schizocartography’:

Schizocartography offers a method of cartography that questions dominant power structures and at the same time enables subjective voices to appear from underlying postmodern topography. It is both the process and output of a psychogeography of particular spaces that have been co-opted by various domineering operations, routines or procedures. It attempts to reveal the aesthetic and ideological contradictions that appear in urban space while simultaneously reclaiming the subjectivity of individuals by enabling new modes of creative expression. Schizocartography challenges anti-production, the homogenizing character of overriding forms that work towards silencing heterogeneous voices.

How Can Schizocartography Be Used?

Schizocartography can be used in any environment or situation where:

  • • It is necessary, or desirable, that a specific social history be revealed from the urban terrain
  • • A controlling aesthetic threatens to take over the desires of a subjected local group
  • • Dominant representations of a particular space sideline alternative representations
  • • It is required that discrepancies between what is said about a space, and what the reality is, need to be highlighted
  • • Some form of re-appropriation of that space is required.