Author Archives: Mélina Germes

Espaces genrés des drogues

Parcours dans l’intimité, la fête et la réduction des risques

Nous sommes ravies d’annoncer la publication de l’ouvrage “Espaces genrés des drogues. Parcours dans l’intimité, la fête et la réduction des risques“, issu de nos échanges et réflexions au sein de la série de journées d’études Drogue, Genre, Ville.

Espaces genrés des drogues

Coordonné par Mélina Germes, Jenny Künkel, Emmanuel Langois, Sarah Perrin, Roxane Scavo, l’ouvrage rassemble les contributions suivantes :

  • Anne Coppel : Histoire des usagères de drogues et réduction des risques face au stigmate
  • Florent Schmitt : L’accès des femmes aux Caarud : une discrimination négative indirecte
  • Maïa Neff : Les maternités acceptables en centre de soins aux addictions
  • Sarah Perrin : Couples et drogues. L’influence des drogues sur le choix du partenaire, les dynamiques conjugales et les séparations
  • Emily Nicholls : Genre, alcool et quartiers « chauds » dans le monde de la nuit mainstream à Newcastle (Royaume-Uni)
  • Roxane Scavo : Le genre des pratiques festives de centre-ville à Bordeaux, entre espaces de plaisir et de maîtrise de soi
  • Jenny Künkel : Gouverner les drogues et la sexualité dans les lieux festifs féministes alternatifs en Allemagne
  • Solenn Real Molina : Usages de drogues et personnes queer dans les espaces
  • urbains : quelles approches pour une recherche critique

Vous pourrez échanger avec les auteur-ices lors de rencontres :

  • Mardi 14 juin à 19h, à la librairie associative « Transit » à Marseille

  • Dates à venir à Lyon et Paris

Pour être informé-es, inscrivez-vous à

When marginalized subjects map their city: Counter-mapping experiments with drug users in some German and French neighborhoods

Mélina Germes, Luise Klaus, “When marginalized subjects map their city: Counter-mapping experiments with drug users in some German and French neighborhoods”, Bulletin of Sociological Methodology/Bulletin de Méthodologie Sociologique, Volume: 152 issue: 1, page(s): 96-124. https://doi-org/10.1177/07591063211040234

This article aims to contribute to the social science discussion on urban policies and the integration (or exclusion) of the perspectives of marginalized groups by asking the question: If there were to be exhaustive urban planning relating to drug issues, what role should drug users play in the planning process? Our answer involves the use of a set of two complementary qualitative cartographic methods which allow us to focus on the inclusion of the voices of marginalized groups. This article is based on methodological experimentation in different French and German cities without aiming at a comparison. The article exposes and discusses firstly an individual interview method called ‘Emotional Mapping’, and secondly a participatory mapping workshop called ‘Ideal City Mapping’. The output of this project has been a web of visual and textual documents, in the form of reports, papers, articles and events such as a travelling exhibition, with the aim of engaging in public discussions with various key players.

Comment habitent les sujets marginalisés ?

Mélina Germes et Roxane Scavo, « Comment habitent les sujets marginalisés ?  »,, Travaux, 2021. URL : ; DOI :

Cet article interroge les manières dont les usagers et usagères de drogue marginalisées fréquentant des lieux d’accueil à bas seuil habitent l’espace urbain dans deux villes : Bordeaux et Berlin. Grâce à une approche de géographie sociale enrichie de sociologie des émotions et de méthodes de cartographie critique, nous avons mené des entretiens de cartographie émotionnelle, rendus sous forme de collages cartographiques. La topographie de l’habiter de chaque ville est présentée, de même que la construction permanente de « chez-soi », ainsi que les relations avec les autres, entre (entr)aide et entrave. Les enquêtes montrent comment les usagers et usagères de drogue marginalisées habitent la ville dans l’adversité.

Special Issue: Drug places between knowledge and representations

Drugs and Alcohol Today: Volume 21 Issue 3
Guest Editors: Mélina Germes, Bernd Werse & Marie Jauffret-Roustide

See table of contents below

“The aim of this special issue is to focus on the spatiality of drug practices and policies,
to question how practices and policies are spatialised and how common perceptions
of social space influence social practices and associated meanings of particular drug
places. By drug places, we mean places characterised by the consumption of
psychoactive substances. However, drug use by itself is not sufficient to characterise
a drug place: it requires some other factors and actors such as public, media and
political discourses; the intervention and action of drug policy stakeholders like
prevention and harm reduction services, municipalities, police; the organisation of
residents’ initiatives; the underground, (sub)cultural knowledge or hearsay narratives
specific to certain groups and the emotional atmospheres et al. So, drug places might
be public, private, semi-public or institutional spaces; they might be geo-localised
areas, as well as imaginary or digital spaces; they might be very mobile and changing
or persistent over decades. Drug places are neither determined by their urbanistic
design or localisation nor by their social characteristics. Drug places emerge as the
result of complex social production, as they are populated by people who use drugs,
residents, professionals and workers, intertwined with health and public safety issues,
appropriate for many uses, designed and managed by public and private landlords.
Their history, the power relationship they are into, their configuration, the manner in
which they are named, their localisation and the scales they are embedded in all
matter as follows: all this contributes to their construction, at a specific moment, in a
particular configuration, as a drug place. With the notion of drug places, we don’t
mean that there would exist places per se related or dedicated to drug practices. The
intent of this special issue is to show how drug places are socially constructed, why
and how actors interact with these constructions. Therefore, the question raised by the
notion of “drug place” is not the one of the localisation of (public) places where people
do drugs (no matter if this refers to open drug scenes, alcohol-related nightlife settings
or other places), usually referred to as places that require public intervention by
political actors and public attention by media.”

Mapping “drug places” from below. The lived cities of marginalized drug users

Germes, M., Klaus, L. and Steckhan, S. (2021), “Mapping “drug places” from below. The lived cities of marginalized drug users”, Drugs and Alcohol Today, Vol. 21 No. 3

Free full-text available on repository HAL-SHS

On top of their legal, economic, social and institutional marginalization, marginalized drug users (MDUs) also experience political marginalization: drug policies shape their lives without their political participation. From a scientific as well as a political perspective, the inclusion of their various viewpoints and situated knowledge is a major challenge, and one to which this paper aims to contribute in light of the experiences and imaginaries of MDUs urban spaces in several German cities.

Following a socio-geographical approach, this paper interrogates how MDUs appropriate and imagine the city, drawing on Lefebvre’s Production of Space and mixing critical cartographic with grounded theory, in the attempt to both understand and reconstruct the world from the situated perspective of MDUs based on their own words, drawings and emotions.

The narratives and drawings of participants show another cityscape, radically different from the hegemonic discourses and mappings antagonizing MDUs and making their existence a social problem. Space appears as a means of marginalization: there are barely any places that MDUs can legitimately appropriate-least of all so-called “public space.” By contrast, MDUs’ imaginaries of an ideal city would accommodate their existence and address further social justice issues.

The notion of “public places” appears unable to express MDU’s experiences. Instead of focusing on the problem of public spaces, policymakers should tackle the question of placemaking for MDUs beyond the level of solely drug-related places.

Drugs (Counter) Mapping Book Project

Drugs are fascinating, because of their effects on mind and body, but also because of our ideas and images of them. A part of human culture for millennia, psychoactive substances have been celebrated and widely integrated into society on the one hand, and framed as evil and prohibited across the world on the other. From local production and use to global trade, they are often tied to crime, vice and discourses of fear.

Cartographic representations contribute to these imaginaries, for example with streams of trade between global south and global north or hotspots of dangerous urban areas. These representations raise concerns, since drugs are a nexus of multidimensional power relationships. The very idea of mapping drugs is rejected by many drug users and advocates.

This book will share alternative knowledge about drugs, from production to consumption. Experimenting with new visualisations and new graphic languages, it will foster other imaginations and understandings of this global phenomenon. Compiling case studies in text and graphic form, it promotes a better understanding of the complexity behind the word, “drugs”.

VIDEO – “Drugs in Party Spaces and Gender”

Videos of the event on the 17.05.21 in Bordeaux.

Emily Nicholls (University of Portsmouth)
“Girl Time”, wine and crossing the line: embodying class and gender through drinking on the Girls’ Night Out

Roxane Scavo (CNRS Passages), Mapping gender and festive drug consumption in Bordeaux

Jenny Künkel (CNRS Passages): Negotiating Drugs and Sex in Contemporary Feminist Party Spaces

Gemma Blok (Open University of the Netherlands): Rave girls in the Netherlands: contested women’s liberation in the 1990s

VIDEO – COVID et usagèr.e.s de drogue à Bordeaux: interview d’Olivier Capdeboscq, La Case (06/05/2021)

Interview d’Olivier Capdeboscq, coordinateur de La Case à Bordeaux, structure de réduction des risques et d’accueil des usagèr.e.s de drogue, à propos des enjeux liés au COVID. L’interview aborde les questions liées à l’hébergement, l’espace public, la santé, la réduction des risques et évoque le projet d’ouverture d’une salle de consommation. Interview par Roxane Scavo et Mélina Germes. Co-organisé par Jenny Künkel.

Video with edited english subtitles.

Interview with Olivier Capdeboscq, coordinator of Bordeaux drug support and risk reduction facility La Case, about issues linked to Covid. This interview covers subjects including housing, public space, health, risk reduction and the project of a drug consumption room in the city. Interview by Roxane Scavo and Mélina Germes. Co-organised by Jenny Künkel.

Partizipatives Mapping: ein Workshop zur Beteiligung von Drogenkonsument_innen an Prozessen der Stadtplanung

Luise Klaus, Mélina Germes, Francesca Guarascio, Daniela Jamin, Anna Dicht: “Partizipatives Mapping: ein Workshop zur Beteiligung von Drogenkonsument_innen an Prozessen der Stadtplanung”, in akzept e.V. 7. Alternativer Drogen- und Suchtbericht 2019, Pabst Science Publishers, pp.198-204, 2020, 978-3-95853-636-4

Zusammen mit marginalisierten Drogenkonsument_innen aus Frankfurt und Berlin wurden insgesamt 3 partizipative Kartierungsworkshops durchgeführt. Dabei haben die Teilneh-mer_innen Vorschläge für eine Stadt(planung) der “idealen Stadt” erarbeitet, in welcher ihre Lebensumstände, alltäglichen Herausforderungen und Existenz im öffentlichen Raum berücksichtig und toleriert werden.

Text zugänglich hier

Emotionale Kartierung in Berlin

Gelebte und erlebte Räume von Klient*innen des Drogenkonsumraums Druckausgleich in Berlin

 Verlauf der Interviews

Ich präsentiere hier die Ergebnisse von 14 Einzelinterviews der emotionalen Kartierung Methode mit deutschsprachigen Klient*innen aus dem Kontaktladen mit integrierten Drogenkonsumraum Druckausgleich (Fixpunkt gGmbH), Nord-Neukölln, Berlin (2018-2019). Geführt wurden die Interviews von Mélina Germes mit Beteiligung von Christian Herrgesell und Francesca Guarascio. Mit Hilfe des sozialarbeitenden Personals, haben wir Kontakt zu deutschsprachigen Interviewpartner aufgenommen. Einen separaten Interviewraum wurde uns von den Mitarbeiter*innen zu Verfügung gestellt, um die Vertraulichkeit der Gespräche zu gewährleisten. Die Gespräche haben zwischen 40 Minuten und mehr als eine Stunde gedauert. Die Gesprächspartner*innen haben 10 Euros Aufwandsentschädigung bekommen.

Elf unter der Teilnehmenden waren Männer, nur drei waren Frauen. Dies spiegelt die Geschlechterunterschiede innerhalb der Klientel von Druckausgleich, wo Frauen einen geringen Anteil haben, welche schwierigerer für uns zu erreichen waren. Nach ein paar Interviews ausschließlich mit Männern haben wir die Sozialarbeiter*innen gebeten, Klientinnen zu überzeugen an der Studie teilzunehmen.

Der gelebte Raum von Drogenkonsument*innen in Berlin Nord-Neukölln

Collages: Mélina Germes.

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Genders and Drugs: report on a workshop and a conference

Governing the Narcotic City
Newsletter n°3, December 2020

  • Everyday life in Christiania – and the fight around Pusher Street (Sage Anderson)
  • Contribute to the “PartyZine – Drugs Genders and Me!” (Mélina Germes)
  • A collective Discussion around the PartyZine Project in Bordeaux (Mélina Germes)
  • Questioning Drugs in Affective or Sexual Relationships (Mélina Germes)

VIDEO – “Alcool et drogue dans les relations affectives ou sexuelles : transactions, consentements, zones grises ?”

1re des Journées Drogues, Genre, ville : “Sex, Drugs and the City”

Cette conférence est l’occasion d’aborder le rôle de la consommation de psychotropes dans la sexualité, et de questionner la façon dont les espaces urbains (des espaces domestiques – de l’intimité du couple à la fête privée ; aux espaces de sociabilité nocturne) sont impliqués et transformés par ces pratiques.


Sarah Perrin (CED) : Couple et drogues. Influences mutuelles du couple, des rapports de genre et des ventes, usages et achats de substances illicites.
Alexia Boucherie (CED) : L’usage de drogues comme amplificateur des “zones grises” dans le consentement sexuel ? Éléments de réflexions sur la sexualité de jeunes français-e-s dans le contexte de festivités privées
Laurent Gaissad (EVCAU, SASHA) : Du circuit festif au chemsex : médicalisation et confinement de la sexualité gay.

Modération : Mélina Germes
Organisation : Mélina Germes, Jenny Künkel, Emmanuel Langlois, Sarah Perrin et Roxane Scavo – Projets Governing the Narcotic City ( et DRUSEC ( Laboratoires PASSAGES et CED.
Captation et montage: Association Raffut, Bordeaux.