Book Launch in Tampere: Exploring Creative Narratives of the Grassroots in the City

On the evening of May 3rd, Kulttuuritalo Telakka in Tampere was abuzz with excitement as we gathered for the launch of a new book and Special Issue of Writingplace, celebrating four years of collaborative work under the COST Action Writing Urban Places. This event, organized by Insurgent Spatial Practices in collaboration with COST Action Writing Urban Places and supported by STUE (Sustainable Transformation of Urban Environments), highlighted innovative methods for engaging with grassroots narratives in urban settings.

With a warm welcome, attendees were greeted by the Action Chair, Professor Klaske Havik from Delft University, who provided an insightful introduction to the book, setting the stage for an evening dedicated to exploring the intersections of creative methodologies and urban narratives.

A significant highlight of the evening was the focus on three chapters with strong ties to Tampere and future collaborative projects. Dalia Milián Bernal guided the audience through the section on methods developed during the Action, directing attention to the extensive Repository available for further exploration. This was followed by Elina Alatalo’s presentation on the Hiedanranta workshop held in the summer of 2022. Her discussion on co-constructing local grassroots narratives was complemented by a short film showcasing one of the innovative methods developed during the workshop. The event also featured contributions from Dorina Pllumbi from Delft University who shared insights from the Tirana training school, an initiative also presented in the book and Diana Malaj from the University of Graz who elaborated on the use of film as a method to investigate urban spaces. Their presentations were enriched by two short films, each capturing stories of planned and unplanned urban spaces, and everything in between. Looking ahead, the evening also served as a platform to launch a call for abstracts for an upcoming book on the theme of spatial narratives of resistance. This new issue of the journal, to be edited by Dalia Milián Bernal, Dorina Pllumbi, and Elina Alatalo, promises to continue the dynamic and inspiring work initiated by the COST Action Writing Urban Places.

The event concluded with a lively discussion among participants, leaving everyone inspired by the innovative approaches and future possibilities in urban narrative research. As a delightful coda to the evening, attendees were invited to enjoy music downstairs, with performances by Johanna Debreczeni and Tango Revolution. This successful launch event underscored the importance of creative and collaborative methods in capturing and shaping the narratives of our urban environments. We are excited to see how these narratives will continue to evolve and inspire future research and practice.
Stay tuned for more updates and opportunities to engage with this vibrant community of writing urban places researchers and practitioners.


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