Sticking with the dance, caring over time

Session #106

Round Table / Discussion

Jonathan Orlek
Liverpool John Moores University

Claire McAndrew
The Bartlett School of Architecture

Cristina Cerulli
Sheffield Hallam University

Mara Ferreri
Politecnico di Torino

This session seeks to facilitate encounters and interferences through a re/turning of the works of selected contributors with participants, bringing forth new temporal perspectives on caring practices within the city.

In our own work we have explored entanglements between care practices and expanded modes of situated spatial production, making use of Joan Tronto’s idea of ‘caring—with’ (2015). Our recent British Academy project Caring—with Cities spoke to a dance of caring acts, moving back and forth across entangled boundaries, configuring states of becoming and with this, reiterative expectations of care over time (Ferreri et al., 2022; Orlek et al., forthcoming).

Boundaries were produced and reconfigured through acts of opening-up/closing-off, the adoption of multiple project positions, and careful choreographing of participatory encounters across actors/objects. This intra-action of lived experiences and articulations of care, holds resonance to feminist posthuman philosophical thinking on movement and entanglement. Karen Barad’s (2007) ‘diffraction’ as a double movement where ‘re/turning’ is seen not as reflecting on a past, but method of seeing new possibilities by ‘turning it over and over again’ (Barad, 2014) and Erin Manning’s (2009) ‘preacceleration’ in movements on the verge of expression, with ‘the potential of what is not-yet’. For both, there is no singular point that marks the beginning, middle or end.

In this session we invite practice-based and theoretical contributions on the sustaining (or not) of caring practices over time. This might encompass:

—Different caring frameworks, articulations, languages

—Embedded case studies on mutual caring practices over time

—Reflexive-/auto- ethnographies and other research methods involving long-term research commitments

—Activist strategies for sustaining careful practices and movements

We seek a broad range of contributions including, full papers, text-based provocations, audio-visual works. The roundtable will be curated using a physical design prop as a catalyst for ‘diffractive’ readings of these works ‘“through one another” to engender creative, and unexpected outcomes’ (Geerts & van der Tuin, 2021).


Barad, K. (2014). Diffracting Diffraction: Cutting Together-Apart. Parallax, 20(3), 168–187.

Barad, K. (2007). Meeting the Universe Halfway: Quantum Physics and the Entanglement of Matter and Meaning. Duke University Press.

Ferreri, M., McAndrew, C., Cerulli, C., Ratcliffe, E., Cavada, M., & Orlek, J. (2022). Caring—With Cities: Project Report.

Geerts, E., & van der Tuin, I. (2021). Diffraction & Reading Diffractively. Matter: Journal of New Materialist Research, 3(1), 173–177.

Manning, E. (2009). Relationscapes: Movement, Art, Philosophy. MIT Press.

Orlek, J., McAndrew, C., Cerulli, C., Ferreri, M., Cavada, M., & Ratcliffe, E. (Forthcoming, July 2023). For a relational understanding of care in critical urban action and mapping. Lo Squaderno: Care and Critical Action, 65.

Tronto, J. C. (2015). Who Cares?: How to Reshape a Democratic Politics. Cornell Selects.