Queer Ecologies: Life and Art in a Generalized State of War (Summer 2015)

As philosopher of science Bruno Latour remarks in the Gilford lectures, the Anthropocene can be understood as a "generalized state of war." This is a war waged on the interconnected relationships of animals, people, and land. Although we can no longer take for granted that the atmospheres we live in are good, the creative proliferation of life continues. Plastic-eating bacteria, jellyfish oceans, and fall-out exclusion zones make up these new ecologies. While this situation is certainly horrific, what might be learned from queer theory, disability studies, and theoretical approaches to the notion of toxicity? Instead of running from these toxic and infertile futures, our present moment seems to demand a creative engagement with the queer ecologies that we are inadvertently heralding in. Led by Heather Davis, this course will address contemporary artistic responses to increased anthropogenic change, fueled by extractavist and militarist impulses.

COURSE SCHEDULE:

Monday, June 22
Tuesday, June 23
Wednesday, June 24
Thursday, June 25
Friday, June 26

All sessions: 10 AM-1 PM

Readings:

Anthropocene, Capitalocene, Chthulhucene, Donna Haraway in conversation with Martha Kenney 

Toxic Animacies, Inanimate Affections, Mel Y. Chen 

Lost Dogs, Last Birds, and Listed Species: Cultures of Extinction, Ursula K. Heis 

Whitedirt.com, A. Laurie Palmer 

Three and a Half Conversations with an Eccentric Planet, Raqs Media Collective