Currently browsing category

Environmental Psychology

Publication OA: Geographical Imagination in Forthcoming _Intl Encyc of Geography_

I recently made my article, “Size Matters to Lesbians Too: Queer Feminist Interventions into the Scale of Big Data,” public via the open access (OA) services SocArxchiv and SSRN. While I am sharing a new publication through same means but on the geographical imagination–the topic of my first blog post and, still and weirdly, my most popular–I also want to write a little more about why I am keen to place my OA work in these archives. Specifically, my dear friend / feminist geographer Sara Koopman pointed out in a recent comment that I didn’t “explain why [I] like these two cites better than academia[.edu] or research gate – both of which have their issues but are WAY prettier and easier to use than these two [sites, i.e. SSRN and SocArxchiv].” Indeed! In brief: while I will surely load my work to and ResearchGate as well, I …

Interviewed for “Home Games: The Strange Overlapping Borders of Sports Fandom”

Rick Paulas is a fantastic journalist who is as enthralled with environmental psychology as I am. We recently spoke about the way notions of geography and identity are co-produced by and evident in “Home Games: The Strange Overlapping Borders of Sports Fandom.” I rarely get a chance to discuss athletics so that — coming from a NESCAC school where *surely* we will *finally* beat Amherst for the football title this year, i.e. go, Trin! — it was a special pleasure to contribute to thinking on this topic.


New Research Project: Trans Tumblr

For about two years, I’ve been collecting data on the use of the #ftm hashtag and, for a shorter time, #mtf hashtag on Tumblr. These oft used trans hashtags, standing for female-to-male and male-to-female respectively, drew my attention as I was coming into my own trans identity. I came upon the world of trans Tumblr, as I call it, in 2010 when I was choosing my own new name. I found a tightly-knit network of trans people who are otherwise unanchored through their geographic diaspora. They were mostly very young, publicly sharing and connecting about the everyday violence and life milestones, accomplishments and losses that fuel life in general and trans life specifically. I was particularly struck by the small number of voices that dominated the conversation, as well as the suicide notes that would float to the surface and the resounding and instant response of those around them …

Heading to ASA 2016

Excited to share the great news that our panel, “Geography, Maps, and Visions of Home in the Classroom,” organized by Eric Covey (U Miami) and including the likes of Elizabeth Belanger (Hobart & William Smith College), Anita Elizabeth Huizar Hernandez (U Arziona), and Patrick McGreevey (American University of Beirut). The abstract is below. It will be wonderful to think about the place of geography in the American Studies pedagogy and contribute to its teaching including and beyond the role of maps through conversations about the meaning and role of space, place, and environment. What is the geographical imagination of American Studies in the research we teach and discuss, and in the assignments we give students that allow them to shape their own understanding of the world and its practices and processes? What geographical imagination should we offer them in order to produce more justice worlds? The abstract for the session …

Updates to the Gender, Sexuality, & Space Reading List

Although I add readings to my Gender, Sexuality, and Space Reading List about every six months, it’s been a few years since I did a detailed review to include any and all possible cites. The list has been extended by about 200 sources as a result!

The Gender, Sexuality, and Space Reading List builds primarily from my experience as a geographer and an environmental psychologist. I welcome colleagues and visitors to recommend other works in the field below in any format (text, film, art, music, performance, etc.). This page is updated about twice a year with new literature.

I also recommend checking out the Gender and Geography Reading List which I help to support, a much longer term project.…

Interviewed for “Mental Maps & the Neuroscience of Neighborhood Blight” in Pacific Standard

I was recently quoted in Rick Paulas’ “Mental Maps and the Neuroscience of Neighborhood Blight” for Pacific Standard. It’s incredibly exciting to see critical geographic work in the public eye.

I excerpt the selections where I was interviewed from the end of the article below:

For a contemporary example of this phenomenon, check out the media’s portrayal of the Black Lives Matter movement. Protests become riots, protestors become thugs, dramatic images of broken windows and burning cars are beamed to white, middle-class viewers who have never been inside the neighborhoods being covered. “[Viewers] presume the neighborhoods are violent,” says Jack Jen Gieseking, a postdoctoral fellow in New Media and Data Visualization at Bowdoin College. “And blame the people within them rather than thinking about how those neighborhoods got that way.” …

Racist practices like redlining, used from the 1930s through the ’60s to deny loans, insurance, supermarkets, and health coverage …

Talk: Personal/Political/Feminist Maps at SDSU Feminist Social Justice Conference

I am blissfully attending and participating in the Feminist Social Justice Conference at San Diego State University, a Workshop on Participatory and Feminist Research Methods to give the talk “Personal/Political/Feminist Maps: Reflections on Spatial Methods for Action Research.” The abstract and slides are below — I expect those who will find them most helpful are dealing with how to work with spatial methods and layering different data types and sorts in order to place them into conversation. I especially highlight mental mapping in conversation with the GIS platforms QGIS and Mapbox, with helpful hints on all as to how to move forward using the methods and analytics in your own research. One addition: my own 2013 paper on the methods and analytic techniques for mental mapping can be found here.

In The Practice of Everyday Life, de Certeau writes that “What the map cuts up, the story cuts …

People, Place, and Space Reader is Top Selling Routledge Planning & Urban Design Book of 2014!

We are pleased to announce that The People, Place, and Space Reader is the bestselling Planning & Urban Design title of 2014! While we are second on this list, our editor at Routledge shared that we just moved to the #1 spot!

The People, Place, and Space Reader brings together the writings of scholars from a variety of fields to make sense of the ways we shape and inhabit our world. The included texts help us to understand the relationships between people and place at all scales, and to consider the active roles individuals, groups, and social structures play in a range of environments. These readings highlight the ways in which space and place are produced through social, political, and economic practices, and take into account differences in perception, experience, and practice. The People, Place, and Space Reader includes both classic writings and contemporary research, connecting scholarship across disciplines, periods, …

Queer(ing) New York Course Videos Now on YouTube

image-CLAGS-Syllabus-for-Queering-New-York-finalIn May 2013, I taught Queer(ing) New York (CLAGSqNY) at the Center for Lesbian and Lesbian Studies (CLAGS) at The Graduate Center of the City University of New York. With over 50 in-person students and over 230 students online, the course provoked exciting conversations with students around the world about the shfiting production of and political economies within lgbtq spaces in the 20th and 21st centuries. The course was and is free and open to the public. No prior knowledge on this topic is required; only an open mind is necessary.

Now I am pleased to share that the course videos have been archived on YouTube and I am posting them below as well as on the CLAGSqNY website. While the course was held in May 2013, you can still take the course via the readings and watching the videos via the CLAGSqNY website as participation in …

New publication: Two Chapters in Queer Geographies: Beirut, Tijuana, Copenhagen

Queer Geographies: Beirut, Tijuana, Copenhagen, a collaborative work of artists, activists, and scholars, showcases the work of queer art installations in these three very different cities throughout the 2000s. The art and its very smart, beautiful catalog highlight the identical processes of neoliberal capitalism that touch each of these places and brings queer life into sync more and more from greater distances. Two chapters of mine appear as the bookends: the academic/personal introduction in “A Queer Geographer’s Life as an Introduction to Queer Theory, Space, and Time,” and the conclusion “What and Where Next? Some Thoughts on a Spatially Queered Recommended Reading List.” I remain delighted and grateful I was asked to reflect on this work and reflect on what queer theory, critical geographic theory, and work on the geographies of sexualities can bring to this radical, important, and exciting catalog. I am also thankful to the lead editor, …

Announcing the launch of The People, Place, & Space Reader Website at

pps_flyerWe are pleased to announce the launch of the website,, for the forthcoming The People, Place, & Space Reader, edited by Jen Jack Gieseking and William Mangold, with Cindi Katz, Setha Low, and Susan Saegert. The People, Place, and Space Reader includes both classic writings and contemporary research, connecting scholarship across disciplines, periods, and locations to make sense of the ways we shape and inhabit our world. Essays from the editors introduce the texts and outline key issues surrounding each topic.

In that there are specific online and open access components of the volume to share, I wanted to send on word via email. The editors are committed to open access (OA) to public knowledge and as such have made their introduction to the book and the twelve section introductions of the book available on the website. We provide links to OA versions of excerpted readings when …

Nature Ecology Society Colloquium at CUNY GC (10/29/12):: Superstorm Sandy: Before, During and After

Every year, the students of the environmental psychology program of the CUNY Graduate Center have put together an amazing conference on the ways nature, ecology, and society are co-produced. This year’s topic is Sandy.

Superstorm Sandy: Before, During and After

Hosted by the Environmental Psychology PhD Program
Colloquium Date: March 8, 2013                                                                                           
Deadline for Proposals: February 20, 2013                                                                             

Hurricane Sandy had drastic impacts on 29 October, 2012. This year’s Nature Ecology Society Colloquium is intended to open up a conversation around Hurricane Sandy. We recognize that politics play a part in this conversation, that there are complex social and environment justice issues that have and need to be understood, and that there must be a rebuilding effort that is sensitive to all of these aspects. We hope this colloquium can be a space where presenters will openly interrogate

Bringing Sandy into the Classroom, from Fish to Tech, Politics to Design

How can we bring the issues and aches of Sandy into the classroom to help work through what has taken place? Here’s my take for the Environmental Methods course in the masters program in Sustainable Interior Environments program at the Fashion Institute of Technology SUNY that I am teaching.

In order to grapple with Sandy and confront the effects of increasing natural disasters at home and abroad, my next class in will use our next class meeting to discuss the inequalities that Sandy re-revealed in the city, the politics of a “natural” disaster, and designing for what lies ahead. As I asked my students: These are all short pieces so please read them all. Think about how each piece–all from different interests, fields, and groups–fits into the next and how the design examples in the last NYT piece fall short or support these larger issues, from fish to tech, from

I define environmental psychology as how people relate to and define spaces and places, and how spaces and places relate to and define people. I take as my starting point Lefebvre’s argument that “[social] space is [socially] produced.” We produce space / space produces us; this falls under an interactionist approach to human-environment relations whereby what is of interest to the researcher is the interaction between humans and environments. The field was founded in 1968 with the first program at The Graduate Center, City University of New York.

Geography is the study of spaces, places, and the people, groups, cultures, societies, systems, institutions, and political economies within them. Since Eratosthenes defined the discipline some time around 200 BCE, geography has historically been divided–primarily by Anglo-Westerners–into four interrelated trends: maps and what they are about, characterizing a place, tracing the interaction between humans and the environment, and the study of …

Welcome. My name is Jen Gieseking and I am a geographer and Ph.D. Candidate in environmental psychology at The Graduate Center, City University of New York.

The primary purpose of this blog is to work through the question of and findings from my dissertation research project: to understand how lesbian/queer women’s everyday spaces and their associated economies in New York City have remained the same or changed over generations since 1983, and how they could do so while facing severe oppression. From a study performed in 1983, Manuel Castells (1985) argued that gay men in San Francisco developed a physical and social place/community by geographical gains intertwined with both unintentional and intentional cultural and economic shifts and decisions. The majority of research done on LGBTQ spaces since this period assumes geographical territorialization as a key tactic for gaining rights for LGBTQ people and a way of everyday queer life that …