2018, Tue, Mar 27

Anthropocene Lecture: Anna Lowenhaupt Tsing

EPFL, École Polytechnique, Alps meterological model, Lausanne, Switzerland | © Armin Linke

EPFL, École Polytechnique, Alps meterological model, Lausanne, Switzerland | © Armin Linke

Modern infrastructures have shaped disturbance-based ecologies that force all living beings constantly to find new ways to survive and live together. Through them, Anna Lowenhaupt Tsing explores the possibilities of life in capitalist ruins.

How do we find new forms of coexistence in the landscapes of the Anthropocene? The Anthropologist Anna Lowenhaupt Tsing explores the complex entanglements of organisms and their nonliving environment. By tracing the routes of migration and trade, the chains of value and speculation, she investigates how this complex interplay continually produces new kinds of environments. She searches the ecologies of the Anthropocene for strategies of “collaborative survival in […] disturbance-based ecologies in which many species sometimes live together without either harmony or conquest.” In her book The Mushroom at the End of the World, recently released in German, she advocates for the transdisciplinary collaboration between scientists and artists in order to make these socio-ecological feedback effects legible.

Anna Lowenhaupt Tsing is Professor of Anthropology at the University of California, Santa Cruz. She is also Niels Bohr Professor at Aarhus University in Denmark and Director of Aarhus University Research on the Anthropocene (AURA), a long term partner of the Anthropocene Curriculum. She is author of The Mushroom at the End of the World: On the Possibility of Life in Capitalist Ruins (2015) and Friction: An Ethnography of Global Connection (2005). She is co-editor of the book Arts of Living on a Damaged Planet: Ghosts and Monsters of the Anthropocene (2017).

The Anthropocene Lecture series is a platform for inviting a number of prominent speakers, accentuating the debate on the Anthropocene.

The Anthropocene Lecture series is being developed in cooperation with the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies, Potsdam, and the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science, Berlin.

On March 23, 2018, Anna Lowenhaupt Tsing will discuss her book The Mushroom at the End of the World in a dialogue with anthropologist Andre Gingrich, taking place at IFK | Kunstuniversität Linz in Vienna.