Dr Angela Last

Lecturer in Human Geography

Contact Details

  • Tel: +44 (0)116 252 3939
  • Email: al418@le.ac.uk
  • Office: Bennett Building, G17


Personal Details

I joined the department in January 2018, after completing two postdocs at University College London and the University of Glasgow. I started off in art and design, and moved into geography through my growing concern for the environmental, cultural and labour conditions of the creative industries. A parallel interest in science led me to volunteer work as a STEMnet Science Ambassador for physics. My art and science background continues to shape my research, which is now mainly located in the field of geohumanities and deals with issues such as environmental racism. In addition to geography, have taught in fashion, and science and technology studies, and I have been a visiting lecturer on the MA in Art & Science at Central Saint Martins. Since 2007, I have been writing the interdisciplinary blog Mutable Matter.

I currently hold two honorary positions, a visiting fellowship at the Department of Sociology at the University of Warwick, and a World Social Science Fellowship at the International Social Science Council.  I am treasurer of the RGS-IBG Race, Culture & Equality Working Group, associate editor at Global Social Theory globalsocialtheory.org, and a member of the editorial board of Environment and Planning D.


I am interested in the connection between environmental and social change. How does change happen? I explore this question through both theoretical and practical experiments.

Cosmos & Crisis

In this research project, I look at the current geopolitical and ecological crisis through the lens of interwar anti-colonial and anti-totalitarian intellectual experiments of the interwar period. Specifically, I am interested in how humanities based authors, artists and activists on both sides of the colonial divide used insights from the sciences, anthropology and theology for their attempts at challenging colonial and totalitarian logics and (geo)political programmes.This theme also forms the basis for my theoretical project on materialism.

Experimental Institutions

In my second project, I follow and participate in institution-like organisations that are run by publics who have become disenfranchised by governments under conditions of ‘austerity’ or neoliberalism. Specifically, I study initiatives in the Global North that are based on counterparts from the Global South. Here, I am interested in how models from the supposedly ‘underdeveloped’ Global South can become regarded as more sustainable pathways to social, economic or political development in the Global North.


I supervise and examine PhDs in the following areas:


  • Political ecology, especially critical race/feminist/queer approaches
  • Geographical aesthetics and poetics (including practice based research)
  • Geographical theory, history and method
  • Experimental/parallel/informal institutions, infrastructures or economies
  • Critical design studies, geographies of creative industries

Enquiries: If you are interested in studying for a PhD in one of these research areas, please make informal enquiries via pgrgeog@le.ac.uk.

Find out more information about Geography PhDs including more research areas, how to apply, funding and entry requirements.



  • Routledge International Handbook of Interdisciplinary Methods (2018)
    Editors: Celia Lury, Rachel Fensham, Alexandra Heller-Nicholas, Sybille Lammes, Angela Last, Mike Michael and Emma Uprichard. London: Routledge.

Articles & Chapters (selection)

  • Last, A. (forthcoming) 'Geopoetics, via Germany'. In E. Magrane, L. Russo, S. de Leeuw, C. Santos Perez (eds) Geopoetics in Practice. London: Routledge.
  • Last, A. (2018) ‘Internationalisation and the Academy: sharing across boundaries?’. In G.K. Bhambra, K Nisancioglu and D Gebrial (eds) Decolonising the University: Context and Practice. London: Pluto.
  • Bhambra, G. K., Last, A., Mayblin, L., Tilley, L. (2018) 'Global Social Theory: Building Resources'. Area (Race and Teaching Special Issue) [online first]
  • Last, A. (2018) ‘Against ‘terrenism: Léopold Sédar Senghor, Pierre Teilhard de Chardin and the fear of a de-spiritualised Earth’. In A Bobbette and A Donovan (eds) Political Geology: Active Stratigraphies and the Making of Life. London: Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Last, A. (2018) ‘Of Interdisciplinarity’. In C. Lury, R. Fensham, S. Lammes, A. Last, M. Michael, E. Uprichard (eds) Routledge International Handbook of Interdisciplinary Methods. London: Routledge.
  • Last, A. (2018) ‘To Risk the Earth: the Nonhuman and Nonhistory’, Feminist Review.
  • Last, A. (2017) ‘Anti-colonial Ontologies. In M. Jackson (ed) Postcolonial Transitions after Political Ontology and Posthumanism. London: Routledge.
  • Last, A. (2017) ‘Re-reading Worldliness: Hannah Arendt and the Question of Matter’, Environment and Planning D: Society and Space
  • Last, A. (2017) Experimenting with Institutions. Soundings 64.
  • Last, A. (2017) ‘Geography’. In S Alaimo (ed) Matter (Macmillan Interdisciplinary Handbooks: Gender). London: Macmillan.
  • Last, A. (2015) ‘We are the world? Anthropocene Cultural Production Between Geopoetics and Geopolitics’, Theory, Culture & Society, GeoSocial Formations Special Issue.
  • Last, A. (2015) Fruit of the Cyclone: Undoing Geopolitics Through Geopoetics. Geoforum 64
  • Last, A. (2014) ‘Who’s the pest? Imagining human-insect futures beyond antagonism’, Science as Culture 23(1).
  • Last, A. (2013) ‘Negotiating the Inhuman: Bakhtin, Materiality and the Instrumentalisation of Climate Change’, Theory, Culture & Society 30(2).
  • Last. A. (2012) ‘Experimental Geographies’, Geography Compass 6(12).

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School of Geography, Geology and the Environment
Bennett Building
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University of Leicester

T: 0116 252 3933

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