Soft Architecture: Walking as an Affective Practice in Lisa Robertson’s “Seven Walks”


  • Sandra MacPherson University of Ottawa


Flaneur, Gender representations, Affect, Urban space


In Lisa Robertson’s “Seven Walks” the speaker and guide do not simply amble through Vancouver’s material space. Their walks are an affective practice that expresses the city in terms of the fluidity of becoming rather than the fluidity of commodity exchange and suggests that the productivity of sexually differentiated walking is distinct from traditional masculinist discourses of the peripatetic as contemplative or simply transgressive.

Dans le livre Seven Walks de Lisa Robertson, la narratrice et la guide ne se contentent pas de déambuler dans l’espace physique de Vancouver. Leurs promenades sont un exercice affectif qui exprime la ville en termes de fluidité du devenir plutôt que de fluidité des échanges commerciaux et suggère que la productivité de la promenade sexuellement différenciée se distingue des discours masculinistes traditionnels du péripatéticien comme contemplatif ou simplement transgressif.


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Author Biography

Sandra MacPherson, University of Ottawa

Sandra MacPherson is a PhD candidate at the University of Ottawa specializing in Canadian literature. Her SSHRC-funded dissertation proposes urban walking as an affective practice that questions agency, public space, and community in the context of the precarities generated under neoliberalism. 


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