Shadows of War

The world is most often presented, in academic text, popular media, and fiction, as a world of places. We are animate beings in a world of objects arranged in a locale. Our geographies have mountains and rivers and landmarks; our civilizations have capitals and governing offices and schools marked on maps; our businesses have boundings with addresses on named streets.

Place is not given, but made. People make place for various reasons: of belonging; of politics; of power and control; of meaning. But people move, thoughts progress, goods flow: we live in a world of refined movement. In studying war, and espeically in studying the shadows, I direct my research not at a set space, but at fluid targets. The shadows as I define them in this book are, at core, about movement, not merely place. They comprise in Auge’s words, non-places. This is part of the way in which they are rendered invisible. It is place that is given meaning and substance, it is locale that is populated, it is site that is “seen.”


Nordstrom, C. (2004). Shadows of War: Violence, Power, and International Profiteering in the Twenty-First Century. University of California Press.


The shadows are lines of flight.