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Professor Kevin Hetherington

Profile summary

Professional biography

I have worked on a range of spatial issues across the disciplines of Geography and Sociology for the past 20 years. I am currently Professor of Geography at The Open University (since 2005) and previously held a Chair in Cultural Sociology at Lancaster University.

I am currently Dean and Director of Studies in the Faculty of Social Sciences and was previously Associate Dean (Research) (2008-2011) and Head of Department in Geography (2011-2012).

Research interests

My recent work has focused on a number of areas.

Museums and cities

I work at the theoretical/philosophical end of museum studies though I have in the past carried out empirical work on issues of access and disability in museums. Particular interests here include the spatiality of museum practice, theorizing museums, and museums, temporality and history. In 2003 I helped establish the online, open access journal Museum and Society with Susan Pearce and Gordon Fyfe and was co-editor of it until 2009. The journal is hosted by the Museum Studies department at University of Leicester.

The remains of the past within the present

In some ways this is connected to my interest in museum and heritage issues but also to questions of cities, materiality and memory. I am interested in exploring issues of ruin, fragment and trace in the constitution of social and spatial practice. A forthcoming co-edited book (with Robin Smith) Urban Rhythms will be published by Wiley-Blackwell in 2013.

Consumption

I have had a longstanding interest in issues of consumption since my first publication of a chapter on the Stonehenge Free Festival as a site of consumption in Rob Shield's Lifestyle Shopping (1992). This interest takes in a co-edited book (1996) and my more recent Capitalism's Eye (2007) which engages with issues of consumer space, commodity fetishism and reception. I have also written on the issue of disposal within consumption practices.

Spatial theory

This runs through all of my work on museums, the past, cities and consumption. It also takes in the work of Foucault, Benjamin, The Situationists, Actor-Networks, Michel Serres as well as a range of themes within cultural geography (haunting, the senses, the underdetermined, absent-presence).

My most recent research has focused on issues of materiality, consumption and spatiality. I have recently completed research into the making of consumer spaces in the nineteenth century. This involves an attempt to re-theorize commodity fetishism around questions of subjectivity and practice. I also have an ongoing research interest in museums and other sites of public culture, having carried out work in recent years on issues of:

  • access and non-visual understandings of museums
  • the changing place of the museum in contemporary urban regeneration strategies

I am happy to consider PhD supervison in any of the areas mentioned here or on related themes.

I am a member of two research centres: The OpenSpace Research Centre (Open University) and the ESRC funded Centre for Research on Socio-Cultural Change (CRESC) (Open University/University of Manchester).

With Tony Bennett and Penny Harvey I'm co-editor of the CRESC book series Culture, Economy and the Social (Routledge).

Books

Robin Smith and Kevin Hetherington (2013 forthcoming) Urban Rhythms, Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell/The Sociological Review Monographs.

Anne Cronin and Kevin Hetherington (eds) (2008) Consuming the Entrepreneurial City: Image, Memory, Spectacle, New York: Routledge.

Kevin Hetherington (2007) Capitalism's Eye: Cultural Spaces of the Commodity, New York: Routledge.

Kevin Hetherington (2000) New Age Travellers: Vanloads of Uproarious Humanity, London: Cassell.

Kevin Hetherington (1998) Expressions of Identity: Space, Performance, Politics London, Thousand Oaks Ca., New Delhi: Sage/Theory, Culture and Society.

Kevin Hetherington and Rolland Munro (eds) (1997) Ideas of Difference: Social Spaces and the Labour of Division. Oxford and Cambridge Mass.: Blackwell.

Kevin Hetherington (1997) The Badlands of Modernity: Heterotopia and Social Ordering, London and New York: Routledge.

Stephen Edgell, Kevin Hetherington and Alan Warde (eds) (1996) Consumption Matters: the Production and Experience of Consumption, Oxford and Cambridge Mass: Blackwell.

Recent journal articles

Kevin Hetherington (2011) 'Foucault, the Museum and the Diagram', The Sociological Review, Vol 59(3): 457-475.

Kevin Hetherington (2007) 'Manchester's Urbis: Urban Regeneration, Museums and Symbolic Economies', Cultural Studies, Vol. 21 (4-5): 630-649.

Kevin Hetherington (2004) 'Second-handedness: Consumption, Disposal and Absent Presence' Environment and Planning D: Society and Space Vol. 22(1): 157-173.

Kevin Hetherington (2003) 'Spatial Textures: Making Place Through Touch' Environment and Planning A. Vol 35(11): 1933-1944.

Kevin Hetherington (2003) 'Accountability and Disposal: Visual Impairment and the Museum', Museum and Society Vol. 1(2): 104-115.

Kevin Hetherington (2002) 'The Unsightly: Visual Impairment, Touch and the Parthenon Frieze' Theory, Culture and Society Vol. 19(5-6): 187-205.

Research groups

NameTypeParent Unit
Centre for Research on Socio-Cultural Change (CRESC)CentreFaculty of Social Sciences
OpenSpace Research CentreCentreFaculty of Social Sciences

Publications

Museums and the ‘Death of Experience’: singularity, interiority and the outside (2014-01-01)
Hetherington, Kevin
International Journal of Heritage Studies, 20(1) (pp. 72-85)


Foucault, the museum and the diagram (2011-08)
Hetherington, Kevin
Sociological Review, 59(3) (pp. 457-475)


O tempo do arquivo: a decadência do museu e a poética da história (2011)
Hetherington, Kevin
Revista Eco-Pos, 14(1) (pp. 268-290)


The Empty gallery? Issues of subjects, objects and spaces (2010-07)
Hetherington, Kevin
Museum and Society, 8(2) (pp. 112-117)


Manchester's Urbis: Urban regeneration, museums and symbolic economies (2007-07)
Hetherington, Kevin
Cultural Studies, 21(4-5) (pp. 630-649)


Museum (2006-03)
Hetherington, Kevin
Theory, Culture & Society, 23(2-3) (pp. 597-603)


Memories of capitalism: cities, phantasmagoria and arcades (2005-03)
Hetherington, Kevin
International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, 29(1) (pp. 187-200)


Secondhandedness: consumption, disposal, and absent presence (2004-02)
Hetherington, Kevin
Environment and Planning D: Society and Space, 22(1) (pp. 157-173)


Spatial textures: place, touch, and praesentia (2003-11)
Hetherington, Kevin
Environment and Planning A, 35(11) (pp. 1933-1944)


The Unsightly: touching the Parthenon Frieze (2002-12)
Hetherington, Kevin
Theory, Culture & Society, 19(5-6) (pp. 187-205)


The status of the object: Performances, mediations, and techniques (2002-12)
Pels, Dick; Hetherington, Kevin and Vandenberghe, Frederic
Theory, Culture & Society, 19(5-6) (pp. 1-21)


Whither the World? Presence, Absence and the Globe (2002)
Hetherington, Kevin
Thamyris/Intersecting: Place, Sex and Race, 9 (pp. 173-188)


Spatial Hauntings (2001-12)
Hetherington, Kevin and Degen, Monica
Space and Culture, 1(11/12)


Phantasmagoria/Phantasm Agora: Materialities, Sacialities and Ghosts (2001-12)
Hetherington, Kevin
Space and Culture, 1(11/12) (pp. 24-41)


Museums and the visually impaired: the spatial politics of access (2000-08)
Hetherington, Kevin
Sociological Review, 48(3) (pp. 444-463)


Social order and the blank figure (2000)
Hetherington, Kevin and Lee, Nick
Environment and Planning D: Society and Space, 18(2) (pp. 169-184)


Museum Topology and the Will to Connect (1997)
Hetherington, Kevin
Journal of Material Culture, 2(2) (pp. 199-218)


Identity Formation, Space and Social Centrality (1996)
Hetherington, Kevin
Theory, Culture & Society, 13(4) (pp. 33-52)


The Contemporary Significance of Schmalenbach's Concept of the Bund (1994-02)
Hetherington, Kevin
Sociological Review, 42(1) (pp. 1-25)


A changing domestic division of labour? Issues of measurement and interpretation (1993-03)
Warde, Alan and Hetherington, Kevin
Work, Employment and Society, 7(1) (pp. 23-45)


Capitalism's eye: cultural spaces of the commodity (2007-08-20)
Hetherington, Kevin
ISBN : 415933412 | Publisher : Routledge | Published : London, UK


New Age Travellers: Vanloads of Uproarious Humanity (2000-03)
Hetherington, Kevin
ISBN : 0 304 33978 4 | Publisher : Cassell | Published : London, UK


Expressions of Identity: Space, Performance, Politics (1998-08)
Hetherington, Kevin
Theory, Culture and Society
ISBN : 0 8039 7877 4 | Publisher : Sage Publications | Published : London, UK


The Badlands of Modernity: Heterotopia and Social Ordering (1997-08)
Hetherington, Kevin
International Library of Sociology
ISBN : 0 415 11470 5 | Publisher : Routledge | Published : London, UK


Afterword (2020-02-05)
Hetherington, Kevin
In: Ferdinand, Simon; Souch, Irina and Wesselman, Daan eds. Heterotopia and Globalisation in the Twenty-First Century (pp. 195-203)
ISBN : 9780367259563 | Publisher : Routledge | Published : London


Foucault and the Museum (2015-07)
Hetherington, Kevin
In: Witcomb, Andrea and Message, Kylie eds. The International Handbooks of Museum Studies: Museum Theory (pp. 21-40)
ISBN : 978-1-4051-9850-9 | Publisher : Wiley Blackwell | Published : Chichester


Rhythm and noise: the city, memory and the archive (2013-09-07)
Hetherington, Kevin
In: Smith, Robin and Hetherington, Kevin eds. Urban Rhythms: Mobilities, Space and Interaction in the Contemporary City. The Sociological Review Monograph Series (S1) (pp. 17-33)
ISBN : 9781118540541 | Publisher : Wiley-Blackwell | Published : Oxford


The ruin revisited (2010)
Hetherington, Kevin
In: Pye, Gillian ed. Trash Cultures: Objects and Obsolescence in Cultural Perspective. Cultural Interactions: Studies in the Relationship between the Arts (pp. 15-37)
ISBN : 978-3-03911-553-2 | Publisher : Peter Lang | Published : Oxford


The Time of the Entrepreneurial City: Museum, Heritage and Kairos (2008-03-31)
Hetherington, Kevin
In: Cronin, Anne and Hetherington, Kevin eds. Consuming the Entrepreneurial City: Image, Memory, Spectacle (pp. 273-294)
ISBN : 978-0-415-95518-8 | Publisher : Routledge | Published : New York, USA and Abingdon, UK


Visions of England: New age travellers and the idea of ethnicity (2006)
Hetherington, Kevin
In: Neal, Sarah and Agyerman, Julian eds. The new countryside? Ethnicity, nation and exclusion in contemporary rural Britain (pp. 173-192)
ISBN : 1 86134 795 2 | Publisher : The Policy Press | Published : Bristol, UK


Favela Tours: Indistinct and mapless representations of the real in Rio de Janeiro (2004-07)
Jaguaribe, Beatriz and Hetherington, Kevin
In: Sheller, Mimi and Urry, John eds. Tourism Mobilities: Places to Play, Places in Play (pp. 155-166)
ISBN : 0 415 33879 4 | Publisher : Routledge | Published : London and New York


Moderns as Ancients: Time, Space and the Discourse of Improvement (2001)
Hetherington, Kevin
In: May, Jon and Thrift, Nigel eds. Timespace: Geographies of Temporality. Critical Geographies (pp. 49-72)
ISBN : 0 415 18084 8 | Publisher : Routledge | Published : London and New York


Consumption, Tribes and Identity (2001)
Hetherington, Kevin
In: Abercrombie, Nicholas and Warde, Alan eds. The Contemporary British Society Reader (pp. 241-250)
ISBN : 0 7456 2263 1 | Publisher : Polity | Published : Cambridge, UK


Materialities, spatialities, globalities (2000-12)
Law, John and Hetherington, Kevin
In: Bryson, John; Daniels, Peter; Henry, Nick and Pollard, Jane eds. Knowledge, Space, Economy (pp. 34-49)
ISBN : 9780415189712 | Publisher : Routledge | Published : London, UK


From Blindness to blindness: Museums, Heterogeneity and the Subject (1999)
Hetherington, Kevin
In: Law, John and Hassard, John eds. Actor Network Theory and After. Sociological Review Monographs (pp. 51-73)
ISBN : 0 631 21194 2 | Publisher : Blackwell | Published : Oxford, UK


In Place of Geometry: The Materiality of Place (1997)
Hetherington, Kevin
In: Hetherington, Kevin and Munro, Rolland eds. Ideas of Difference: Social Spaces and the Labour of Division. Sociological Review Monographs (pp. 183-199)
ISBN : 9780631207689 | Publisher : Blackwell | Published : Oxford, UK


Stonehenge and Its Festival: Spaces of Consumption (1992)
Hetherington, Kevin
In: Shields, Rob ed. Lifestyle Shopping: The Subject of Consumption. International Library of Sociology (pp. 83-98)
ISBN : 0 415 06059 1 | Publisher : Routledge | Published : London, UK


Urban Rhythms: Mobilities, Space and Interaction in the Contemporary City (2013-11-01)
Smith, Robin and Hetherington, Kevin eds.
The Sociological Review Monographs
ISBN : 9781118540541 | Publisher : Wiley-Blackwell | Published : Oxford


Consuming the entrepreneurial city: Image, memory, spectacle (2008-03)
Hetherington, Kevin and Cronin, Anne eds.
ISBN : 978-0-415-95518-8 | Publisher : Routledge | Published : New York


Consumption Matters: The Production and Experience of Consumption (1997)
Edgell, Stephen; Hetherington, Kevin and Warde, Alan eds.
Sociological Review Monographs
ISBN : 9780631203506 | Publisher : Blackwell | Published : Oxford


Ideas of Difference: Social Spaces and the Labour of Division (1997)
Hetherington, Kevin and Munro, Rolland eds.
Sociological Review Monographs
ISBN : 0 631 20768 6 | Publisher : Blackwell | Published : Oxford, UK