Category: Xyz…

Society & Space interview

Society and Space has posted a conversation/interview that Harlan Morehouse carried out with me in early October.

While it’s focused on Ecologies of the Moving Image, we talk about plenty of other things — nature and culture, the eco-humanities, the Anthropocene, ontology, critical geography, Buddhism, Zizek, Peirce, nationalism, withdrawn objects, and more. And plenty of films, from Westerns and Bergfilmen (Weimar Germany’s mountain films) to science-fiction, Children of Men, Avatar, and the work of Herzog, Von Trier, and others.

(Had the interview taken place just a few days later, we would have talked about Gravity, too. What a film.)

Read the whole thing here.



Under Western Skies CFP

Under Western Skies: Intersections of Environments, Technologies, and Communities

September 9 – 13, 2014
Mount Royal University
Calgary, AB CANADA

Under Western Skies is a biennial, interdisciplinary conference on the environment. The third conference welcomes academics from across the disciplines as well as members of artistic and activist communities, non- and for-profit organizations, government, labour, and NGOs to address collectively the environmental challenges faced by human and nonhuman actors.

The conference is held on the Mount Royal University campus (Calgary, Alberta, CANADA) in the LEED Gold-certified Roderick Mah Centre for Continuous Learning.

Keynote speakers for the 2014 conference include:

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Digital environmental humanities

It’s the second day of the Digital Environmental Humanities Workshop at McGill University. Yesterday was devoted to the environmental humanities, today to the digital. One of the main goals is to bring the two together in new and productive ways.

Many exciting developments… Geoff Rockwell has been posting his notes from the conference. His list of links to digital humanities tools is particularly useful; scroll down to “Sunday Sept. 8th” on that page.

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File:Gvva kochelsee1.jpg

I’m at the Vollmar Akademie by Lake Kochel in the Bavarian Alps, just a short train ride beyond the last S-Bahn station south of Munich, for “Studying the Environment – Working Across Disciplines.” The Rachel Carson Center has got a bunch of us together here to hammer out some ideas for inter/trans/disciplinarity in environmental research.

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The AAR panel responding to 2013 Holberg Prize winner Bruno Latour’s Gifford Lectures has now been scheduled. Information is as follows.


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We’ve hit 400*

More here and here and here.

We haven’t been there in

Can someone please turn down the thermostat?

*The exclamation mark that was originally in this title bothered me; seemed too celebratory (hardly the intent). So I’ve trashed it.



Dark earth days

Composing a worthwhile Earth Day post takes more energy than I have today, so instead I’ll link to Jeremy’s Earth post at Struggle Forever!  It articulates a thought I often feel on this day (surrounded as I get by students eager to maternalize the planet) but in a way that resonates with the weirdness of the last week, with its bombs, explosions, and highly mediated manhunts.

A few snippets:

The Earth is not your mother . . . S/h/it is a monstrous assemblage . . . Earth Day is a dark holiday.  It is a reminder, not of the beauty of nature or the miracle of life, but of the horrors that we have wrought upon the rocky surface of this planet . . .

And the picture says a great deal:


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New ecocriticism book series

The list of advisors for this new book series in Ecocritical Theory and Practice shows just how the field of ecocriticism has internationalized over the last two decades. I’m pleased to be part of it.

Ecocritical Theory and Practice Book Series

Lexington Books, Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Group 

Ecocritical Theory and Practice highlights innovative scholarship at the interface of literary/cultural studies and the environment, seeking to foster an ongoing dialogue between academics and environmental activists. Works that explore View full article »

Shaviro interview

A few cousin blogs have already mentioned Figure/Ground’s interview with Steven Shaviro, which I recommend for those interested in Whitehead, speculative realism, media theory, and other themes explored on this blog.

Shaviro has insightful things to say about Isabelle Stengers’ role in reviving an interest in Whitehead, Gilbert Simondon and his (and Whitehead’s) relevance for ecological thinking, and Francis Fukuyama’s neo-conservative critique of the academic tenure system.

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Publishers: from sublime to ridiculous

Brian Leiter is sharing the results of a survey on his blog to see which academic publishers are considered “best” in his field of philosophy. I find surveys like this useful — at least when carried out somewhat scientifically and systematically (which Leiter’s isn’t and doesn’t claim to be) — and I think these particular results are not too different from what an equivalent survey in other humanities fields might find.

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