Digital and non-digital representations as actors in the enactment of selfhood and community on the Appalachian Trail

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Cultural geographers working with non-representational theories have recently returned to thinking about representations as actors in the relational processes of making spaces, selfhood and commu-nities. A particular focus for studies of literary texts is examining how representation ‘takes place’, how texts are part of what hap-pens in the world, and how we can better understand the force of representations-in-relation at work. In this paper I will address this question, by examining the role that representations play as actors in the production of community and selfhood among hikers on the Appalachian Trail. As hiker representations straddle digital and non- digital media in the twenty-first century, scholarly approaches con-tinue to view them as little more than mediators, or ersatz forms of, in-person speech. Here, I take a non-representational approach to hiker writings to focus on the relationships that develop between AT hikers and the writings they encounter as a means of under-standing how these representations-in-relation take place on the trail, and how they contribute to what happens – that is, to the production of community and subjectivity among Appalachian Trail hikers
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)912-929
Number of pages18
JournalSocial & Cultural Geography
Issue number6
Early online date13 Nov 2021
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2023


  • Non-representational
  • Digital geographies
  • Hiking
  • Stories
  • Appalachian Trail
  • Selfhood
  • stories
  • digital geographies
  • hiking
  • selfhood

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