Open Humanities Lab Symposium: New Humanities & the Anthropocene (14-15 May)

Welcome to the Open Humanities Lab Symposium: New Humanities & the Anthropocene, taking place on 14th & 15th May at Openlab, Stockholm.

In order to register for the event, please send an email to: the.posthumanities.hub[at]gmail.com

New Humanities & the Anthropocene (Uncertainty, response-ability and humankind)

Now, the environment is in us, and we humans are fully in the environment: that much is clear in this new planetary era of uncertainty some call the Anthropocene. This new geological period, the environmental ‘Age of Man’, is often defined by unparalleled human disturbance of the Earth’s ecosystems, climate, and biodiversity. Almost half of the wildlife on Earth has been lost in the past forty years. Perhaps we will soon have spawned more transgenic organisms, synthetic biological systems, hybrid creatures or artificial intelligences than we ever asked for. In the age of the Anthropocene, humans have become a ‘force of nature’, making nature – in its classical sense – over.  The old idea of Universal Man  in its classical and imagined sense of a bounded individual, safely zipped up in a white skin of his own, guided by rational thought rather than sociability, preconceptions and desires, along with his anthropocentrism seem dated, if not down-right detrimental to our planetary existence. Conventional divides between nature and culture, sex and gender, body and technology, human and animal, and between science and society, have collapsed.

During the past several decades, emerging research in the humanities has turned its attention to subjects that were previously conceived as ‘not human enough’: women, queers, children, migrants, people of colour, elderly, and other groups. Simultaneously, popular culture, technologies, animal subjects, insects, plants, whole ecosystems, along with all kinds of human and more-than-human infrastructures, call for our attention. After all, values, purpose, existential conditions and sociocultural formations that are historically sustained, or not, on local or larger scales, are the expertise of the humanities (and its sibling social sciences). The human exceptionalism of the humanities is increasingly abandoned in favour of planetary ethics, societal accountability, and a more-than-human humanities of conviviality. We witness now the exciting emergence of new humanities, responding to present societal challenges.

How can the humanities accommodate the transformations associated with advances in science, technology, medicine, with the Anthropocene and the ‘great acceleration’ of planetary damage following suit with ’progress’ and ‘growth’? Is there a solidarity in our precarious diversity as we now all have to learn to live with the wounds of the world, to live on a damaged planet? Can we, like Timothy Morton, re-imagine kindness in its human and more-than-human sense? How can the new humanities, like environmental humanities, feminist bio-philosophy, cyborg studies, architectural philosophy, multispecies studies, eco-art, citizen humanities, gender studies, human-animal studies, plant theory, techno-humanities, media studies and digital humanities, respond to the challenges of the Anthropocene? Such forms of posthumanities – or new humanities – often share a sense of belonging in a world not divided across nature and culture, arts and sciences. For new humanities, postdisciplinary bridge-building and collaborations are crucial. So is responsibility, response-ability, and situated knowledges, as Donna Haraway and decades worth of feminist theorising on what gets to count as human or natural remind us.

Can the new humanities, transformative and integrative in nature, become not just relevant to society but also enact real change? Can we have research that is participatory, communicable, and, as Rosi Braidotti puts it, ‘worthy of our times’?

Come join the conversation on uncertainty, response-ability, and humankind in the age of the Anthropocene, and see if the new humanities’ cultivation of attentiveness, curiosity, care, concern, and critique can do something for you, co-existentially with others.

Warmly welcome to an open dialogue amongst various artists, scholars, educators, citizens, academic activists, and journalists, a symposium where we break bread together in public and forge new brave alliances in the face of the unexpected!

After all, humanities is for everybody.

Speakers:

Katja Aglert, independent artist and researcher, SE

Marco Armiero, KTH, SE

Rosi Braidotti, Utrecht University, UK

Christine Daigle, Brock University, CA

Hayden Lorimer, University of Glasgow, UK

Christina Fredengren, Stockholm University, SE

Hélène Frichot, KTH, SE

Matthew Fuller, Goldsmiths, UK

Myra Hird, Queen’s University, CA

Janna Holmstedt, KTH, SE

Lauren LaFauci, Linköping University, SE

Nina Lykke, Linköping University, SE

Tara Mehrabi, Karlstad University, SE

Norie Neumark, LaTrobe University, AU

mirko nikolić, independent artist, SE/FI

Jesper Olsson, Linköping University, SE

Marietta Radomska, Linköping University, SE/University of Helsinki, FI

Lina Rahm, Linköping University, SE

Margrit Shildrick, Stockholm University, SE

Sverker Sörlin, KTH, SE

Lotten Wiklund, journalist, SE

Cecilia Åsberg, KTH, SE/Linköping University, SE

Full programme in PDF

UPDATE (13.05):

The registration for the event is now CLOSED as we have reached the capacity of the venue. There might be a few spots left in case anyone from the registered participants cancels last minute.

 

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The Second International Symposium “Eco/Decolonial Arts: Re-imagining Futures”, 28 August at Konstfack, Stockholm, SE

The International Network for ECOcritical and DECOlonial Research in collaboration with The Posthumanities Hub and with a generous support by Konstfack University of Arts, Crafts, and Design present:

The Second International Symposium

Eco/Decolonial Arts: Re-imagining Futures

28th August 2018, 10:15 – 18:00

Venue: Konstfack University of Arts, Crafts, and Design, Stockholm

(room: MANDELGREN)

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Photo: Cecilia Åsberg

As the current ecological crises and different forms of oppression, discrimination and injustice around the globe demonstrate, the questions of the environment and the people, as well as of social and environmental justice, are not isolated from one another. These concerns and connections come to the fore in both implicit and explicit ways in the work of artists, activists and academics working with the issues of decolonisation, on the one hand, and ecology, on the other.

The International Network for ECOcritical and DECOlonial Research connects artists, activists and academics, who in their work, in both implicit and explicit ways, concentrate on these connections and concerns: the issues of ecology, on the one hand, and decolonisation, on the other.

The network was officially launched at the workshop ‘Eco/Decolonial Arts: Open-ended Poetic/Philosophical Forays’, which took place on 28-29 June 2017 in Linköping. The two-day event was focused on the developing of transversal dialogues between various ways of engagement with both decolonial and ecocritical/ecological perspectives. The slash [‘/’] in the name of the workshop (‘Eco/Decolonial’) refers to feminist scholar Karen Barad’s (2014) concept of ‘cutting together apart’ that points to the necessary entanglement of nature and culture; the environment and the human; epistemic, symbolic and physical violence towards nonhumans and humans alike; and finally, to the call for environmental and social justice.

The rich conversations that arose during the last-year workshop and still fuel the network’s activities have also inspired us to organise the second edition of ‘Eco/Decolonial Arts’ – yet, this time in a form of a one-day symposium. Thus, the upcoming event, scheduled on 28th August 2018 and taking place at Konstfack University of Arts, Crafts, and Design in Stockholm, will focus not only on the urgency of posing questions that combine concerns with the environment and decolonial critique in their broadest understanding, but also on the arts’ unique potential for a diverse, multifaceted, creative and critical query of what such transdisciplinary engagements might mean for reimaging a different future in a ‘more-than-human’ world.

Programme :

10:00 – 10:30 – Introduction

10:30 – 11:05 – Katja Aglert, Turning over the grounds of sgulS and.

11:05 – 11:40 – Vera Weetzel, White tears and tear art. Reflections on whiteness and    complicity in bio/eco art

11:40 – 12:15 – Marietta Radomska, Non/living Archives: Deterritorialising Death

12:15 – 13:30 – Lunch break (self-paid basis)

13:30 – 14:05 – Madina Tlostanova, On the way to a pluriverse? A Feetless Bird in a Vanished Forest-garden

14:05 – 15:15 – Camila Marambio and Nina Lykke, Vulnerable Story Telling. Queering cancer beyond the life/death hierarchy

15:15 – 15:45 – Coffee break (self-paid basis)

15:45 – 16:20 – Cecilia Åsberg, Why the environmental humanities needs art, worldly situatedness and integrative feminist theory-practices

16:20 – 16:55 – Anne Gough, Walking to Al Quds

16:55 – 17:30 – Dalida Maria Benfield, Where We Are Now: A Dispatch From “Indigenous Knowledges and Sustainable Pasts/Futures”

17:30 – 18:00 – Final discussion: the future of the network (‘where do we go from here?’)

Full programme with abstracts and bios: click HERE.

 

SYMPOSIUM: Deterritorialising the Future

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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