Baghdad’s thirdspace: Between liminality, anti-structures and territorial mappings
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Wedged in-between the dense urban grain of Baghdad, blast walls of t-shaped concrete have littered the streets and neighbourhoods since 2003, after the US led invasion. The idiosyncrasy of these walls lies in their exaggerated spatial liminality. They appear, change location and disappear overnight, and on a daily basis, leaving Iraqis to navigate through labyrinths of in-between spaces. This article critically reveals the new social and power structures that have emerged in the context of the city in response to the condition resulting from this unique urban intervention. This uncanny spatial and social condition of permanent liminality will be analysed through Victor Turner’s critical theories of liminality and anti-structure coupled with Edward Soja’s theory of Thirdspace, interpreting, through a series of territorial mappings, a complex liminal condition in a contested and disrupted city.
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