Toggle Main Menu Toggle Search

Open Access padlockePrints

The Americas: A Relational or Abyssal Geography?

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Jonathan Pugh



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC-ND).


Jonathan Pugh, Professor of Island Studies at the Department of Geography at Newcastle University, is a leading scholar in island studies. He is renowned for his critical reflections on the prominent role which islands and thinking with “islandness” is playing in the generation of different contemporary pathways of critical thought. His earlier work contributed to scholarship challenging perceptions of islands as insular, and thereby joins key concerns in archipelagic studies, by delineating a “relational turn” in island studies. Pugh’s more recent work, together with David Chandler, is interested in the role of the island in the Anthropocene, examined in his “Anthropocene Islands” project and their co-authored book Anthropocene Islands: Entangled Worlds (2021). His latest research conceptualizes what Pugh and Chandler call “the abyssal,” a radical critique of modernity, by drawing on Caribbean and Black scholarship in their book The World as Abyss: The Caribbean and Critical Thought in the Anthropocene (2023). This interview teeters between these debates and is a result of written reflections and verbal correspondence between Jonathan Pugh and Barbara Gfoellner over several months throughout 2021 and early 2022. The final interview is an edited version of their discussion, which started off with reflections on archipelagic studies and its relevance for the Anthropocene and organically moved to Pugh’s more recent theoretical reflections on “the abyssal.”

Publication metadata

Author(s): Gfollner B, Pugh J

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Journal of Transnational American Studies

Year: 2023

Volume: 14

Issue: 1

Pages: 303-329

Online publication date: 29/05/2023

Acceptance date: 29/05/2023

Date deposited: 29/05/2023

ISSN (electronic): 1940-0764

Publisher: University of California


DOI: 10.5070/T814161198


Altmetrics provided by Altmetric