8th Biennial Conference of the European Association for the Study of Literature, Culture and Environment (EASLCE): “The Garden – Ecological Paradigms of Space, History, and Community”

The Garden Conference poster

Join the 8th Biennial Conference of the European Association for the Study of Literature, Culture and Environment (EASLCE): “The Garden – Ecological Paradigms of Space, History, and Community” at the University of Würzburg (Germany) from September 26 -29, 2018.

For more info click HERE.

Early bird registration until 31st Augst!

 

CALL FOR APPLICATIONS: EASCLE Webinar on ‘Toxic Embodiment’ by Prof. Cecilia Åsberg and Dr. Marietta Radomska

Photo: Cecilia Åsberg

Join us for the EASCLE Webinar on ‘Toxic Embodiment’ – for more info click HERE.

Webinar: ‘Toxic Embodiment’

By Prof. Cecilia Åsberg and Dr. Marietta Radomska

Sat, Aug 25th, 10:30-12:00 CEST.

REGISTER HERE

Existential concerns around environmental health today involve a much wider set of issues (and a wider set of bodies) as we intra-act with antibiotics, nanoparticles, and untested chemical cocktails through the food we eat, the make-up we wear, the new sofas we sit on, or the environments we dwell in. We are more acutely aware today of how we are in nature, and nature – polluted as it may be – in us. With the recognition of the ecological crisis and its gravity, we have – according to some scientific experts – entered a new geological period: the Anthropocene, in which it is the human who constitutes the biggest threat to the survival of the earth and its human as well as more-than-human inhabitants.

Through the proliferation of plastics and chemical pollution more generally, petrochemicals constitute in effect forms of social, material, and biological writing of toxic embodiment. This makes toxic embodiment an urgent concern for environmental humanities and for environmental literacies at large.

Advancements in genetic engineering, the chemicalization of food production, and the rapid growth of the pharmaceutical industry have made human, animal, and plant embodiments simultaneously enhanced and debilitated. They become ‘toxic bodies’, ‘pharmaceutical subjects’, and they leave a toxic footprint in the world.

By approaching the theme of ‘toxic embodiment’ from a broad and transdisciplinary perspective (eco-cultural studies; body and gender studies; medicine and life sciences; posthumanities; science, technology, and society; and, especially, the environmental humanities), this webinar will explore the risks and the opportunities that these changes may bring.

More specifically, the session will engage with the topic of toxic embodiment as our always-already environed technobodies, and how they/we are shaped by health norms and toxic realities that put into question the notions of health and disease, vulnerability and well-being, as well as life/death, and the dis/ability of the ‘natural’ human body. Here, the ‘human’ emerges as a set of toxic embodiments – ones that are radically tethered to, or shaped by, their milieus, including their more-than-human companions (synthetic molecules, microbes, fungi, plants, and animals), and the ways they/we all come together.

 

Inspirational questions:

  1.  How do questions of toxicity and its impact on both human and nonhuman bodies influence environmental discourses? How do they influence the articulation of environmental problems? What kind of imaginaries do they mobilise and what futures do they seek to envision?
  2. What conceptualisations of the body emerge from the present narratives on toxicity? What are the understandings of the subject that are (re)produced through these narratives?
  3. Environmental discourses that engage with the issues of toxicity often put emphasis on the ideas of the natural and the anthropogenic, the normal and the abnormal, as well as health and illness. How are these notions understood in the context of the webinar readings? Are they reworked or abandoned? What does the enquiry of toxic embodiment do to their conventional understandings?
  4. What new approaches, methodologies, and methods does the work on toxic embodiment offer?

Primary literature:

Ah-King, Malin and Eva Hayward. 2013. ‘Toxic Sexes: Perverting Pollution and Queering Hormone Disruption’. O-zone: A journal of object-oriented studies 1: 1-12. Available at: https://www.academia.edu/6368781/Toxic_sexes_Perverting_pollution_and_queering_hormone_disruption

Alaimo, Stacy. 2016. ‘Conclusion’ in Exposed. Minneapolis: Minnesota University Press. Available at: https://dearchivecollaboration.files.wordpress.com/2016/02/alaimo-from-exposed.pdf

Chen, Mel Y. 2011. ‘Toxic Animacies. Inanimate Affections’. GLQ 17(2-3): 265-286. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1215/10642684-1163400

Davis, Heather. 2015. ‘Toxic Progeny: The Plastisphere and Other Queer Futures.’ philoSOPHIA 5 (2): 231-250. Available at: http://heathermdavis.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/Philosophia_Davis.pdf

Additional readings:

Zahara, Alexander R.D. and Myra Hird. 2015. ‘Raven, Dog, Human: Inhuman Colonialism and Unsettling Cosmologies’. Environmental Humanities 7: 169-190. Available at: http://environmentalhumanities.org/arch/vol7/7.9.pdf

Giovanna DiChiro (2010) ‘Polluted Politics? Confronting Toxic Discourse, Sex Panic, and Eco-Normativity’ in Queer Ecologies, eds. C. Sandilands & B. Erickson. Bloomington: Indiana University Press: 199-230.

Haraway, Donna. 2016. ‘Awash in Urine: DES and Premarin in Multispecies Response-ability’ in Staying with the Trouble. Durham: Duke University Press: 104-116.

SYMPOSIUM: Deterritorialising the Future

Deterritorialising the Future - Poster-page-001

Deterritorialising the Future: A symposium on heritage inof and after the Anthropocene

14th September 2018, 9:30 – 17:30
Senate House London
UK

What does it mean to conserve, collect, curate or interpret ‘the past’ in the shadow of the Anthropocene? How might we reimagine issues of care, vulnerability, diversity and inheritance in this new geological/conceptual framework? Drawing on current investigative work in the environmental humanities, comparative literature, media studies, archaeology, museology, and cultural geography, this transdisciplinary symposium seeks to ‘deterritorialise’ the future by exploring new modes of doing and thinking heritage in more-than-human worlds.

Confirmed speakers:

  • Cecilia Åsberg, Stockholm University
  • Denis Byrne, Western Sydney University
  • Rick Crownshaw, Goldsmiths University of London
  • Caitlin DeSilvey, University of Exeter
  • Christina Fredengren, Stockholm University
  • Franklin Ginn, University of Bristol
  • Þóra Pétursdóttir, University of Tromsø
  • Mary Thomas, Ohio State University
  • Adrian Van Allen, Musee du Quai Branly
  • Kathryn Yusoff, Queen Mary University of London
  • Joanna Zylinska, Goldsmiths University of London

Register for Tickets

 

* SAVE THE DATE *

The symposium will be preceded by a public lecture from Professor Claire Colebrook, Penn State University, on Thursday 13th September. See the AHRC Heritage Research Events Page for further details.

The lecture and symposium form part of the AHRC Heritage Research programme. Please visit the website to find out about our other events and activities.

To keep up to date with news and events follow us on Twitter: @AhrcHeritage

Re-launch of The Posthumanities Hub at KTH Royal Institute of Technology, 28th May 2018!

Meet the Posthumanities Hub programme image

Welcome to the official re-launch of The Posthumanities Hub that takes place on 28th May 2018 at KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm, Sweden!

For a pdf version of the programme, see here.

Meet the Posthumanities Hub! The program of this day represents a smorgasbord of the many projects and activities – and of course some of the collaborating scholars – working together within The Posthumanities Hub.

Programme

Part I. Venue: Salongen, KTHB.

10.15-12.00 “Practicing posthumanities” – introductory lecture with Prof. Matthew Fuller, Goldsmiths University of London, UK and, The Posthumanities International Network. Commentary: Renée Valiquette, PhD, Nipissing University, Canada.

Welcome with Cecilia Åsberg, prof of Gender, nature, culture LiU, Founding Director The Posthumanities Hub (PH), and KTH Guest Prof of Science and technology studies of Gender and Environment, and VR-postdoc Marietta Radomska, Co-Director of The PH.

Part II. Venue: Seminar room, Division of History of Science, Technology and Environment, KTH.

13.15-13.30 Welcome with the Posthumanities Hub, a community of scholars now also at KTH, by Cecilia Åsberg, Prof and Founding Director, and Marietta Radomska, PhD, Co-Director of The PH and VR-postdoc. Welcome words by Sabine Höhler, PhD Head of Division of History of Science, Technology and Environment – host of the PH.
13.30-13.35 “Deep Time and Intragenerational Justice” by Christina Fredengren, PhD, Docent Archeology (SU), Research Director at National Historical Museums.
13.35-13.45 “Prion Stories”, and “Tears for Fish” by Justin Makii and Vera Weetzel, PhD-students.
13.45-13.50 “Flock Frequency” by artist Janna Holmquist, PhD.

13.50-13.55 “A Feminist Feeling for the Forest” by Olga Cielemęcka, PhD, The Seed Box Postdoc.
13.55-14.00 “Popularizing Posthumanities” by Lotten Wiklund, The Posthumanities Hub science journalist.

— Break —

14.15-14.20 “Ecologies of Death” by Marietta Radomska, PhD, VR-postdoc, Co-Director of the Hub.
14.20-14.25 “Death in the Life Sciences” by Tara Mehrabi, PhD.
14.25-14.30 “Feminist Environmental Humanities”, and “Herbaria 3.0” by Lauren LaFauci, PhD.
14.30-14.45 Virtual messages from honorary members.
14.45-15.00 Wrapping up with Cecilia Åsberg and Marietta Radomska.

Part III. Venue: Division of History of Science, Technology and Environment, KTH.

15.00-16.00 Snacks and “mingle” with the companions of The Posthumanities Hub.

The Posthumanities Hub is a research group, a lively community, and a platform for postdisciplinary humanities and more-than-human humanities, for philosophy, arts, and sciences informed by advanced cultural critique and some seriously humorous feminist creativity. In our research, we specialize in the human and more-than-human condition, and inventive feminist materialist philosophies. This entails work in environmental humanities, human animal studies, cultural studies of science and technology, new media, citizen science/citizen humanities, digital and techno-humanities, medical humanities and environmental health (especially toxic embodiment), the posthuman, a-human, inhuman, nonhuman, and trans-, queer or anti-imperialist theory-practices, feminist science studies, and other inter- and/or postdisciplinary areas of researching a complex and changing world that does not admit to old academic divisions of labour (i.e., that research on “culture” is for the humanities and “nature” for science.) We work to meet up with pressing societal challenges, across the natureculture divide and target specific cases. Curiously, creatively, and critically.

 

CANCELLED: Eco-Poetry Reading with Professor Ann Fisher-Wirth at KTH.

Unfortunately, this event had to be cancelled.

Eco-Poetry Reading with Professor Ann Fisher-Wirth (University of Mississippi, USA)
15 May, 13.00-15.00
Teknikringen 74D, Plan 5/5th floor
 

American eco-poet Ann Fisher-Wirth will visit the Environmental Humanities Lab at KTH on Tuesday, 15 May, when she will read poems and show images from her most recent book, Mississippi, a collaboration with photographer Maude Schuyler Clay. Photographs and letterpress poems from this project are presently on exhibit throughout Mississippi, and a performance piece involving six actors has been created from two dozen of the poems. All are warmly welcome to her premier reading from Mississippi in Sweden!

Ann Fisher-Wirth has published several other books of poetry, including Dream CabinetCarta MarinaFive Terraces, and Blue Window. With Laura-Gray Street, she co-edited the groundbreaking Ecopoetry Anthology (Trinity UP 2013, 2014). Ann has received numerous awards for her work, including the Mississippi Arts and Letters Poetry Award and two Mississippi Arts Commission poetry awards. Ann has had residencies at The Mesa Refuge; Djerassi Resident Artists Program; Hedgebrook: Women Authoring Change; and CAMAC/Centre d’Art, Marnay, France, and she was the Anne Spencer Poet-in-Residence at Randolph College in Virginia in 2017. She is a Fellow of the Black Earth Institute (2015-2018) and has held Fulbright fellowships in Switzerland and Sweden, where she held a Distinguished Chair at Uppsala University. She is also past president of the Association for the Study of Literature and Environment (ASLE). Ann directs the Environmental Studies Program and teaches US literature and poetry at the University of Mississippi, USA, and she teaches yoga at Southern Star in Oxford, Mississippi.

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Mini-symposium “Becoming with Alien Encounters and Speculative Storytelling”

The Posthumanities Hub in collaboration with Tema Genus Higher Seminar Series  and The Eco- and Bioart Research Network have a pleasure to present:

Mini-symposium

Becoming with Alien Encounters and Speculative Storytelling

5th April 2018

13:15 – 16:30

Linköping University

Room: Faros, Tema building (Campus Valla)

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Speculative fiction – as an ‘umbrella term’ – refers to a wide range of narrative fiction that employs ‘fantastic’, supernatural or non-mimetic elements. In the times of the climate change and environmental crises accompanied by futuristic ‘technology-will-save-us’ scenarios on the one hand, and visions of ‘doom and gloom’, on the other, speculative fiction has gained a momentum as an alternative way to reimagine the future in the ‘Anthropocene’.

As feminist scholar Donna Haraway writes, the ‘speculative’ element of story-telling leads to ‘opening up what is yet-to-come in protean entangled times’ pasts, presents, and futures.’ (2011).

Taking this as our starting point, we see speculative narratives that combine reality and fiction, and philosophy, science and art, as a prolific site for the emergence of different ontological, epistemological and ethico-political possibilities. Through the stories of experimental encounters with alien species, in/organic entities, non/living assemblages and the void, we explore ethico-onto-epistemologies of becoming in a more-than-human world.

 

Speakers:

Katja Aglert (independent artist, Stockholm, SE)

Nina Lykke (professor em., Linköping University, SE)

Line Henriksen (lecturer, University of Copenhagen, DK)

Marietta Radomska (postdoc, Linköping University, SE)

 

See also: ALIEN ENCOUNTERS programme

What’s Up at the Hub?

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Here we  share with you news and updates on new jobs, visiting scholars at the Posthumanities Hub, various events, seminars, and workshops that are organized by the Hub or its mothership, Tema Genus (the Gender Studies at the interdisciplinary department of TEMA, at Linköping University, Sweden).

News

  • Our warmest congratulations on their great success to the amazing Marietta Radomska and Lisa Linden, both of TEMA LIU, who received VR grants! Marietta will be working on her project entitled ”Dödens ekologier: miljön, kroppen och etik i samtida konst” and Lisa on “Empowerment och stigmatisering: Patientorganisationer, gynekologisk cancer och identiteter i omvandling.”
  • Congratulations to “hubbers” Desirée Ljuncrantz (Tema G, Liu) and Marianna Szczygielska (Central European University, visiting PhD student at Tema G in 2015/16) who successfully defended their PhD theses!
  • A special issue of Angelaki on “Tranimacies: intimate relations between animals and trans*studies” edited by our fantastic colleagues Marianna Szczygielska, Eliza Steinbock, and Anthony Wagner is now out! With contributors from our hubbers, Marietta Radomska and Vera Weetzel, and our Tema Genus Professor Madina Tlostanova, among others, this issue is pushing the boundaries of thinking beyond the human/animal binary.
  • Congratulations to Christine Daigle from Brock University and to her team for receiving a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) partnership development grant to support Posthumanism Research Network. We’re happy and proud to be Posthumanities Research Network partner and collaborator and we’re thrilled about these new opportunities to work together.
  • Have a look at this, it’s from our friends in international posthuman studies: The 9th Beyond Humanism Conference https://vimeo.com/228020059
  • We recommend you look up Royal Holloway Centre for the GeoHumanities‘ website for more information on interdisciplinary relations between geography and arts and humanities scholarship and practice; blog, forum, call for papers, and more!

Call for papers

  • We are pleased to announce that a call for abstracts intended for a special issue of an environmental humanities journal on a theme of “Plantarium. Human-Vegetal Ecologies” is now open. For this special issue, edited by Olga Cielemecka and Marianna Szczygielska, we invite contributions that look into human-botanical ecologies, relationalities, and histories.  We seek both traditionally academic submissions, as well as visual materials, provocations, review essays, activist reports and commentary pieces, and other varying genres. Please submit abstracts (500 words) to plantarium2017[at]gmail.com as word documents (.doc or .docx) until September 29, 2017. Call available here.

Upcoming Conferences, Workshops, and Other Events

  • Curated talks around Automata, a thought-provoking performance on stage at Orionteatern in Stockholm are now available online here. A a recording of a discussion “Free-spirited cyborgs and controlled bodies” is also available online. Chaired by Carl Åkerlund this panel discussion between Samira Ariadad, Helena Granström, Waldemar Ingdahl and the founder and director of Posthumanities Hub, Cecilia Åsberg, took place on May 6th in Orion Theatre following a staging of Automata.

Recent Past Events

  • A two-day workshop Eco/Decolonial Arts: Open-ended Poetic/Philosophical Forays whose aim was to develop transversal dialogues between various ways of engagement with both ecocritical/ecological and decolonial perspectives took place at Tema G on June 28 and 29.
  • A Seed Box funded workshop “Plantarium: Re-Imagining Green Futurities” organised by Olga Cielemecka and Marianna Szczygielska took place in June, 1st-2nd, at Linkoping University. It brought together activists, artists, practicioners, independent researchers, and academics to rethink the generative potentialities of the botanical. More about the event. Many thanks to our invited keynote speakers Cate Sandilands and Michael Marder, Mirko Nikolic for a plant yoga session and Christina Sadlbauerand Regula Heggli for vegetal speed dating, and all participants for making it such a special event! Now we’re planning to work on a CfP for a special issue, intended for one of the top environmental humanities journals, on the theme of hum-vegetal ecologies. Stay tuned!
  • Professor Cecilia Åsberg, director and founder of the Posthumanities Hub, gave a keynote lecture at the 8th Annual Conference on the New Materialisms “Environmental Humanities and New Materialisms: The Ethics of Decolonizing Nature and Culture.” The conference took place at Maison de l’UNESCO in Paris on June 7-9, 2017. Professor Åsberg gave a lecture entitled “A Thousand Tiny Anthropocenes” on ecological humanities, mapping out their challenges and potentials as feminist posthumanities.

For archives of our news and events earlier in 2017, click here.

Iceberg
Iceberg 1999 by M A Felton