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Mark Bould’s new book The Anthropocene Unconscious makes more or less the same argument as I made in my 2008 New Formations article “Stirring the Geopolitical Unconscious: Toward a Jamesonian Ecocriticism,” later expanded in the “Terra and Trauma” chapter of Ecologies of the Moving Image, but he applies it to literature rather than film. The […]

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It’s been a few weeks since the last post on this blog, and will likely be another month before it starts up again in any serious way. This is because the fall semester has been wrapping up around me, with teaching, advising, and an overload of academic committee work building up to a rather deafening […]

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The work of environmental/climate humanists is premised on the assumption that the way we make sense of the world matters. This means that the dreams we have — Covid pandemic dreams, climate change dreams — also matter. The best artists, in turn, help shape our collective dreaming. The environmental arts and humanities aim to help […]

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It seems the world is coming to realize what Environmental Studies folks have been saying since I first became a Master’s student in that field 34 years ago: that humanity risks careening off the rails into a species-wide, if not planet-wide, smash-up unless it profoundly reorients the way it functions on this planet. That three-decade […]

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One of the things modern humans aren’t very good at is being fully present in a given moment — being here now, as Ram Dass famously put it — and remaining so in the midst of the activities, distractions, and challenges of the day. Meditation apps and mindfulness teachers can train you to do that […]

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Videos from the Aarhus (Denmark) conference “The Garden and the Dump: Across More-than-Human Entanglements” are available and free for the viewing, here on the conference YouTube channel. They include talks by philosophers Timothy Morton and Michael Marder and a wonderful conversation between Chen Quifan, Alice Bucknell, and Angela YT Chan. My own talk, “Event, Time, […]

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Marking the passage of the seasons from summer to winter and back again is something people have done for millennia. Seasons are reliable — anyone living outside the equatorial band will continue to have colder and warmer seasons, probably for the rest of our lives. But many of us are realizing that larger cycles may […]

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My thinking about the Anthropocenic predicament continues to be informed, even haunted, by Andrei Tarkovsky’s films Solaris and Stalker, along with their literary predecessor novels by (Lviv-born) Stanisław Lem and the Strugatsky brothers, respectively. Two keynote talks I’ve been invited to give this October — one for Ukraine’s Congress of Culture, to take place in […]

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“Trust your immune system.” One often hears this slogan, or some version of it, from people who are against vaccination. But what does it mean, or what should it mean for an intensely social species like ours, living in a microbiologically fluid and creative environment like Earth’s biosphere? We can only trust something if we […]

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I just sent in my abstract for the Aarhus University conference The Garden and the Dump: Across More-than-Human Entanglements. Other speakers include Tim Morton, Michael Marder, and Chinese science fiction writer Chen Qiufan. The conference, which is open to all, will take place online on September 15 and 16. Further information here. (I like the […]

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Last updated on November 11, 2018 Immanence sometimes dips into areas of controversial or “boundary” science, which means areas of science whose interpretation is both publicly and scientifically contentious. While I don’t consider climate science to be all that scientifically controversial (though it is certainly politically controversial), and the general topics of “fake news,” “information war,” and […]

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I’ve written about ethical witnessing before — both in the eco-trauma chapter of Ecologies of the Moving Image and in my reflections on Joshua Oppenheimer’s The Act of Killing. Seeing Serhii Loznitsa‘s latest film, Austerlitz, at Kyiv’s Molodist Film Festival a few days ago, prompted me to think some more about how a seemingly neutral camera, […]

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