Rarely considered from the perspective of ordinary citizens as opposed to institutional actors, national maps have been primarily deconstructed as abstract tools of power that express nationalist agendas. This paper offers an alternative examination of the map as a performative tool of national pluralism. In tune with the most recent conceptualizations of everyday forms of nationhood, I explore multiple creative auto-cartographies of Italy as experiential images for investigating the coexistence of several senses of nationhood and cultural diversity. To this end, I combine an inductive visual content analysis of nearly three hundred remappings of Italy, uploaded online by readers of a popular national newspaper, La Repubblica, with a visual semiotic reading of six samples. Here, the playful idea of remapping the nation becomes a catalyst to produce or resist a sense of belonging to the nation, while eliciting a wider spectrum of feelings with regard to internal and external perceived meaningful others. This paper concludes that the different ways in which ordinary people map the nation have to be taken seriously, as they show evidence that these readers absorb and decode, but also resist or challenge, different mainstream discourses regarding the idea of nationality, coexistence, and cultural diversity.

Mapping coexistence in Italy: Reshaping the cartographic feelings of the plural nation

Laura Lo Presti
2021

Abstract

Rarely considered from the perspective of ordinary citizens as opposed to institutional actors, national maps have been primarily deconstructed as abstract tools of power that express nationalist agendas. This paper offers an alternative examination of the map as a performative tool of national pluralism. In tune with the most recent conceptualizations of everyday forms of nationhood, I explore multiple creative auto-cartographies of Italy as experiential images for investigating the coexistence of several senses of nationhood and cultural diversity. To this end, I combine an inductive visual content analysis of nearly three hundred remappings of Italy, uploaded online by readers of a popular national newspaper, La Repubblica, with a visual semiotic reading of six samples. Here, the playful idea of remapping the nation becomes a catalyst to produce or resist a sense of belonging to the nation, while eliciting a wider spectrum of feelings with regard to internal and external perceived meaningful others. This paper concludes that the different ways in which ordinary people map the nation have to be taken seriously, as they show evidence that these readers absorb and decode, but also resist or challenge, different mainstream discourses regarding the idea of nationality, coexistence, and cultural diversity.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11577/3378082
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