This article suggests that our current (fearful) preoccupation with climate change emerges from two paradoxical desires: the desire to recover some mythical benign stable state for the world's climate and the desire to assert ourselves over the world's climate by engineering our way to achieve this outcome. But by seeing climate either as something to be idealized or as something to master, we fail to see what is happening to the world's climate. It is being reinvented as a novel entity, now co-produced between human and nonhuman actors. Rather than resist and lament the results of this new creative force, we must learn to live with them.
Peter Del Tredici
Urban habitats are characterized by high levels of disturbance, impervious paving, and heat retention. These factors, acting in concert, alter soil, water, and air conditions in ways that promote the growth of stress-tolerant, early-successional vegetation on abandoned or unmaintained land. In most urban areas, a cosmopolitan array of spontaneous plants provide important ecological services that, in light of projected climate change impacts, are likely to become more significant in the future. Learning how to manage spontaneous urban vegetation to increase its ecological and social values may be a more sustainable strategy than attempting to restore historical ecosystems that flourished before the city existed.
Harlan Koff and Carmen Maganda
In any region of the world, in any country, each beginning of the year offers us a scenario for potential changes, purposes, goals and hopes, and 2019 does not have to be the exception. Despite various forecasts of slower global economic growth in the coming year (World Bank, Forbes, Reuters), and despite the latest reports from the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) on stressful atmospheric conditions, among other environmental discomforts around the planet, we cannot limit our human capacity to see the future with courage and optimism.
Museu do Amanhã’s Artistic Staging as a Socioscientific Narrative on Climate Change
Praça Mauá, 1 – Centro, Rio de Janeiro – RJ, 20081-240, Brasil https://museudoamanha.org.br/en
We are accustomed to museums full of heritage displays from bygone eras, helpfully “seriated” for the visitor to tell a story of linear human progress toward an “end”: the great metanarrative of (Western) modernity. This is not so with the Museu do Amanhã (Museum of Tomorrow) in Rio de Janeiro. A joint public-private partner venture (by the City of Rio de Janeiro, the Roberto Marinho Foundation, Banco Santander, the British Gas Project, and the government of Brazil), the museum was conceptualized as a dark but openended narrative on climate change and the future of humanity.
Mimi Sheller and Gijs Mom
Th is issue sheds new light on one of the classic concerns of mobility studies: transitions in forms of personal transportation. Mobility transitions are arguably one of the key issues of the twenty-first century, as societies around the world face the pressing questions of climate change mitigation and adaptation. A better understanding of recent and historical transitions not only in vehicle technologies but also in urban forms could be crucial to guiding future transition dynamics. At the same time, a deeper appreciation of historical transitions in transportation can also inform how we think about the present: what methods we use, what factors we take into consideration, and what theoretical perspectives we employ.
Jeroen P. van der Sluijs
Uncertainty complexity and dissent make climate change hard to tackle with normal scientific procedures. In a post-normal perspective the normal science task of "getting the facts right" is still regarded as necessary but no longer as fully feasible nor as sufficient to interface science and policy. It needs to be complemented with a task of exploring the relevance of deep uncertainty and ignorance that limit our ability to establish objective, reliable, and valid facts. This article explores the implications of this notion for the climate science policy interface. According to its political configuration the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) adopted a "speaking consensus to power" approach that sees uncertainty and dissent as a problematic lack of unequivocalness (multiple contradictory truths that need to be mediated into a consensus). This approach can be distinguished from two other interface strategies: the "speaking truth to power approach," seeing uncertainties as a temporary lack of perfection in the knowledge (truth with error bars) and the "working deliberatively within imperfections" approach, accepting uncertainty and scientific dissent as facts of life (irreducible ignorance) of which the policy relevance needs be explored explicitly. The article recommends more openness for dissent and explicit reflection on ignorance in IPCC process and reporting.
Bret Gustafson, Francesco Carpanini, Martin Kalb, James Giblin, Sarah Besky, Patrick Gallagher, Andrew Curley, Jen Gobby and Ryan Anderson
Cepek, Michael. 2018. Life in Oil: Cofán Survival in the Petroleum Fields of Amazonia. Austin: University of Texas Press. 302 pp. ISBN 978-1477315088.
Choné, Aurélie, Isabelle Hajek, and Philippe Hamman, eds. 2017. Rethinking Nature: Challenging Disciplinary Boundaries. Abingdon; New York: Routledge. xiv + 268 pp. (Paperback) ISBN 978-1-138-21493-4.
Davis, Diana K. 2016. The Arid Lands: History, Power, Knowledge. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. 271 pp. ISBN 978-0262034524.
Gissibl, Berhard. 2016. The Nature of German Imperialism: Conservation and the Politics of Wildlife in Colonial East Africa. New York: Berghahn Books, 2016. 374 pp. ISBN 978-1-78533-175-6.
Ives, Sarah. 2017. Steeped in Heritage: The Racial Politics of South African Rooibos Tea. NC: Duke University Press. 272 pp. ISBN 978-0-8223-6986-8.
Martínez-Reyes, José. Moral Ecology of a Forest: The Nature Industry and Maya Post-Conservation. Tucson: University of Arizona Press. 216 pp. ISBN 978-0816531370.
Powell, Dana E. 2017. Landscapes of Power: Politics of Energy in the Navajo Nation. Durham, NC: Duke University Press. 336 pp. ISBN 978-0822369943.
Raygorodetsky, Gleb. 2017. The Archipelago of Hope: Wisdom and Resilience from the Edge of Climate Change. New York: Pegasus Books. 336 pp. ISBN: 978-1681775326.
Wright, Christopher, and Daniel Nyberg. 2015. Climate Change, Capitalism, and Corporations: Processes of Creative Self-Destruction. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 254 pp. ISBN 978-1107435131.
Agri-cultures in the Anthropocene
Martin Skrydstrup and Hyun-Gwi Park
Today when we think about climate change and Greenland, we do not think about agriculture, but of the melting ice. Perhaps the most evocative articulation of this connection was made in December 2015, when Paris was hosting the United Nations Climate Change Conference, or COP21. At this event, artist Olafur Elisasson and geologist Minik Rosing exhibited their art installation Ice Watch at the Place du Pantheon: a circle of icebergs with a circumference of twenty meters, which resembled a watch ticking and/or a compass providing orientation for the world’s leaders in the palm of Paris. The ice had been transported by tugboat from the harbor of Nuuk—Greenland’s capital—to France. The captain of the tugboat was Kuupik Kleist, former prime minister of Greenland, who was quoted saying: “Ninety per cent of our country is covered by ice. It is a great part of our national identity. We follow the international discussion, of course, but to every Greenlander, just by looking out the window at home, it is obvious that something dramatic is happening” (Zarin 2015).
Sarah Townsend, Anna J. Willow, Emily Stokes-Rees, Katherine Hayes, Peter C. Little, Timothy Murtha, Kristen Krumhardt, Thomas Hendricks, Stephanie Friede, Peter Benson and Gregorio Ortiz
ANDERSON, E. N., Caring for Place: Ecology, Ideology, and Emotion in Traditional Landscape Management
ÁRNASON, Arnar, Nicolas ELLISON, Jo VERHUNST, and Andrew WHITEHOUSE, eds., Landscapes Beyond Land: Routes, Aesthetics, Narratives
BARNARD, Timothy P., ed., Nature Contained: Environmental Histories of Singapore
BARTHEL-BOUCHIER, Diane, Cultural Heritage and the Challenge of Sustainability
FOOTE, Stephanie and Elizabeth MAZZOLINI, eds., Histories of the Dustheap: Waste, Material Cultures, Social Justice
HAKANSSON, Thomas N. and Mats WIDGREN, eds., Landesque Capital: The Historical Ecology of Enduring Landscape Modifications
PERLMUTTER, David and Robert ROTHSTEIN, The Challenge of Climate Change: Which Way Now?
RUPP, Stephanie, Forests of Belonging: Identities, Ethnicities, and Stereotypes in the Congo River Basin
SODIKOFF, Genese Marie, ed., The Anthropology of Extinction: Essays on Culture and Species Death
SWANSON, Drew A., A Golden Weed: Tobacco and Environment in the Piedmont South
WILBER, Tom, Under the Surface: Fracking, Fortunes, and the Fate of the Marcellus Shale
Climate Change and the Cinematic Ethics of Immersive Filmworlds
Ludo de Roo
In an age of ecological disasters and increasing environmental crisis, the experience of any cinematic fiction has an intrinsic ethical potential to reorient the spectator’s awareness of the ecological environment. The main argument is that the spectator’s sensory-affective and emphatically involving experience of cinema is essentially rooted in what I call “elemental imagination.” This is to say, first, that the spectator becomes phenomenologically immersed with the projected filmworld by a cinematic expression of the elemental world, and second, much like there is no filmworld without landscapes, the foundational aspect of elements are revealed as preceding and sustaining the narrative and symbolic layers of film experience. While suggesting the existential-ethical potential of this fundamental process of film experience, the second aim of this article is to show that this form of elemental imagination complements more mainstream “environmentalist” films, such as climate change documentaries and blockbuster apocalyptic genre films.