The Abandoned Lighthouse

The Liminal Experience of Ruins

  • Isla Whateley University of Edinburgh
Keywords: ruins, liminality, cities, affect, modernity


Summary: Ruins can play a particularly poignant role in modern capitalist society, and exist in a liminal, marginal state between the past and the future. Western Harbour Lighthouse in Leith, Edinburgh is an example of this kind of ruin, separated from the rest of the city by a physical and metaphorical boundary. Ruins also have affective presence, inciting a particular feeling in those who enter. This essay explores how the liminal status of the Lighthouse disrupts the usual ‘order’ of the modern city.

How to Cite
Whateley, I. (2018). The Abandoned Lighthouse. Re:Think - a Journal of Creative Ethnography, 1(1), 11-15. Retrieved from
Academic Essays