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Environmental Writing Workshop

with CEH/AUFF Guest Researcher Charles Zerner

Info about event


Monday 8 May 2023,  at 13:00 - 16:00


AU Nobelparken, building 1483, room 444



Come join in a conversation about environmental writing, facilitated by CEH/AUFF Guest Researcher Charles Zerner (Environmental Studies, Sarah Lawrence College). This participatory event will bring together the social sciences, the humanities, and the arts: a journey through the global climate crisis on a variety of scales, in specific contexts, and through diverse media. Fiction and nonfiction writing, history, and film will be drawn upon to investigate understandings of an epoch controversially called “the Anthropocene.”  What do these different perspectives, methods, and insights bring to our perceptions of specific environments? How do different rhetorical formations, imaginaries, narratives, and visual images inform cognitive and affective responses to the Anthropocene?  What do they bring to our understanding of the global environmental emergency that is the signature of this moment in planetary history? How do interventions in the arts and humanities constitute acts of “world-making”—new ways of seeing, feeling, and imagining human ways of caring for this planet? 

The conversation will be based on several "specimen" texts that offer very different ways of writing environments. We think out loud about how these texts work to make powerful descriptions/embodiments of environments. How can concerned scholars make things including writing but also other forms that will move people?  

Participants are asked to complete the following short readings before the event:

  • Amitav Ghosh.  2019. Gun Island.  New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
    Core portions:  Pp. 71-111;  Pp. 133-162
  • Susanne Antonetta.  Body Toxic: An Environmental Memoir.  Washington, D.C.:  Counterpoint
    Core portions:  First words, Pp. 3-32: Trailing Clouds, Pp: 126-152
  • Karen Russell.  October 21, 2021, The Ghost Birds,  The New Yorker. Pp. 57-64

Open to all, but PhD students and postdocs are especially encouraged to attend. Please sign up here: https://events.au.dk/charles-zerner-workshop/signup. Suggestions for accessing the readings will be sent to registered participants.