Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)


Eels make us reconsider geography. Pulling at the edges of our maps, they stretch them into new shapes, reveal borders for what they are, a kind of conceptual putty. The creature is known as the ‘European Eel’, but in fact it is not European at all. It can be found in the rivers of Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia and Egypt. Its range is wide: it likes a broad margin to its life. And why not? After travelling 3,000 miles from the Sargasso, how could it only be content with western Europe, when it might as well go the extra thousand miles to the Nile, or to the rivers of Latvia and Estonia? When I realise this, it becomes hard to look at the atlas in the same way. Eels fold the map of the world along different creases, make the planet wider and stranger than the one we knew. But they also knit our world together, bring the Sebaouin line with the Shannon, the Loukkos together with the Loire.
Original languageEnglish
JournalThe Willowherb Review
Early online date14 Dec 2018
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 14 Dec 2018

Structured keywords

  • Centre for Environmental Humanities


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