Publication details

Reproduction of the identity of a region: perceptual regions based on formal and functional regions and their boundaries

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Year of publication 2023
Type Article in Periodical
Magazine / Source Geografiska Annaler: Series B, Human Geography
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Science

Keywords Perceptual region; reproduction of the identity of a region; formal region; functional region; administrative region; regional identity
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Description This paper introduces a way to study the reproduction of (the identity of) a region through the concept of perceptual region. Perceptual region-revised here in light of the institutionalization of regions theory and thus comprehended as the subjective image of a region in the mind of an individual person-connects certain 'European' and 'American' regional traditions. Investigating the institutions imprinted in perceptual regions exposes on what basis people construct regions and what (re)produces such regions. This case study deals with the perception of the Bohemian-Moravian boundary in the minds of 454 borderland inhabitants, surveyed with questionnaires. Among the revealed institutions of the former administrative regions of Bohemia and Moravia, there are various formal/homogeneous and functional regions as well as their boundaries-they all reproduce the examined regions. Besides demonstrating that regions are multiple realities (where both space and time matter), social constructs, and dynamic processes, the article discusses the interrelationship of the abovementioned region types and highlights perceptual regions as essential for the region's existence. Furthermore, it suggests that focusing on ordinary people's perceptions may develop knowledge not only about the concept of region but also the concepts of the regional identity of people, resistance identity, and regionalism.
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