Toxic Sovereignties: Life after Environmental Collapse|
Fall 2020 not offered
|Course Cluster and Certificates: Social, Cultural, and Critical Theory Certificate|
What politics emerge at the borders of life and nonlife? Representations of the human species as being on the brink of environmental collapse have become increasingly common, as the specters of climate change and cataclysmic environmental disaster seem to bear down ever more heavily upon us. At the same time, the increasing entanglement of human bodies with various forms of chemical and otherwise man-made pollutants presage a slightly different future, one in which, if the human species does not outright disappear, it will be fundamentally transformed. This course explores different forms of political and social action that have emerged in response to these seemingly epochal shifts with a particular emphasis on the ever-mutating concept of sovereignty. Our goal is to explore the ways in which the shifting borders between human life and its artificially produced absence can serve as productive sites of new political forms and transformations of older ones, even as they also generate tremendous social and cultural anxiety.
||Gen Ed Area Dept:
|Course Format: Seminar||Grading Mode: Graded|
||Fulfills a Major Requirement for: (ANTH)(CSCT)(ENVS-MN)(ENVS)(SISP)(SISP-Anth Conc)(SISP-ScieDblMjr)
Readings TBD, but can possibly include: Tim Choy, ECOLOGIES OF COMPARISON; Anna Tsing, THE MUSHROOM AT THE END OF THE WORLD; Jake Kosek, UNDERSTORIES, Giorgio Agamben, STATES OF EXCEPTION; Kim Fortun; ADVOCACY AFTER BHOPAL; and selected essays on themes of ecology, catastrophe, and sovereignty.
|Examinations and Assignments: |
This class will combine conventional and unconventional assignments. Alongside a take-home midterm and a final research essay, students will complete one entry per week in a "toxic sovereignties" journal, applying course themes to current events, artistic practice, and/or events in their own lives, and to present in small groups on a significant issue relating to the course themes in class at least twice during the semester.
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