The "spatial turn" in literary studies is transforming the way we think of the field. The Routledge Handbook of Literature and Space maps the key areas of spatiality within literary studies, offering a comprehensive overview but also pointing towards new and exciting directions of study. The interdisciplinary and global approach provides a thorough introduction and includes thirty-two essays on topics such as:

  • Spatial theory and practice
  • Critical methodologies
  • Work sites
  • Cities and the geography of urban experience
  • Maps, territories, readings.

The contributors to this volume demonstrate how a variety of romantic, realist, modernist, and postmodernist narratives represent the changing social spaces of their world, and of our own world system today.

chapter |6 pages


The reassertion of space in literary studies

part I|76 pages

Spatial theory and practice

chapter 1|19 pages

In, of, out, with, and through

New perspectives in literary geography

chapter 2|11 pages

Critical Literary Geography

chapter 3|11 pages

Senses of Place

chapter 4|10 pages

Inventions of Space

Deleuze between concept and event

chapter 6|13 pages

Spatializing Practices at the Intersections

Representations and productions of spaces

part II|74 pages

Critical methodologies

chapter 7|10 pages

Literary Geography and the Digital

The emergence of neogeography

chapter 8|11 pages

Reading as Mapping

chapter 10|11 pages

Elizabeth Bishop in and out of Place

A topopoetic approach

chapter 11|10 pages

Literature Across Scales

chapter 12|13 pages

Digital Literary Cartographies

Mapping British Romanticism

chapter 13|9 pages

Literature and Land Surveying

part III|73 pages

Work sites

chapter 14|9 pages

Atopia / Non-Place

chapter 15|11 pages


The possible and real in Foucault, Beckett, and Calvino

chapter 16|8 pages

Dreams, Memories, Longings

The dimension of projected places in fiction

chapter 17|8 pages

Imaginative Regions

chapter 18|9 pages


Thick description in the city

chapter 19|10 pages


Literary geographies of possession, separation, and transformation

chapter 20|16 pages

Island Spatialities

part IV|58 pages

Cities and the geography of urban experience

chapter 21|9 pages

The City Novel

Measuring referential, spatial, linguistic, and temporal distances

chapter 22|9 pages

From the City of London to the Desert Island

Defoe and the writing of space and place

chapter 25|7 pages

On this Spot

Materialism, memory, and the politics of absence in Greenwich Village

chapter 26|9 pages

The Following is an Account of What Happened

Plot, space, and the art of shadowing

part V|71 pages

Maps, territories, readings

chapter 27|12 pages

From the Spatial Turn to the Spacetime-Vitalist Turn

Mahjoub’s Navigation of a Rainmaker and Owuor’s Dust

chapter 28|11 pages

Environmental Determinism and American Literature

Historicizing geography and form

chapter 29|9 pages

Mapping without Maps

Memory and cartography in Las Casas’s Very Brief Account of the Destruction of the Indies

chapter 30|14 pages

Joycean Chronotopography

Homer, Dante, Ulysses

chapter 31|12 pages

Intellectual Cartographies of the Cold War

Latin American visitors to the People’s Republic of China, 1952–1958

chapter 32|11 pages

Feminist Geocritical Activism

Natalie Barney’s writing of women’s spaces into women’s places