Places are often thought of as ‘scenes’ upon which social life takes place. Such a static place-conception lends itself to a particular instrumental and simplistic way of thinking about places. Instead this paper seeks to illustrate that places are complex and relationally defined by multiple actors, human as well as non-human. The burning down of the Danish seaside hotel ‘Svinkløv Badehotel’ is used as a lens through which such place complexity is understood. The paper presents a theoretical scaffolding for understanding how Svinkløv Badehotel became articulated as an authentic place in the wake of the dramatic event. Through a combined analysis of place materiality and public media representation, an account is given of how a disruptive event can work as a productive lense for understanding places and thus illustrates the analytical point of the paper: that places are never ‘empty’ but are configured by multiple human as well as non-human actors.
Original languageEnglish
JournalSpace & Culture
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)52-64
Number of pages13
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2022


  • place discourses
  • place materiality
  • disruptive events
  • authentication
  • relational place


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