Date: Thursday, November 7, 2019, 2:00-3:30 pm.
Place: Intercultural Center (ICC) 662, Georgetown University, 3700 O St. NW Washington DC, 20057.
Title: The Anthropocene Might Already Be Over. What's Next?
Abstract: Contemporary societies have a tendency to name things based more on what’s been lost than what is actually transpiring in real time. Thus, a suburban development might be dubbed something bucolic-sounding like “Quail Meadows” after the quail have been chased off and the meadows turned into building pads. More to the point, the naming of historical epochs has always been done with the benefit of hindsight, and the perils of doing so contemporaneously can be read as a form of reification or a self-fulfilling prophecy. Still, there’s no doubt that the implication of the Anthropocene is evident: humans (though not all equally) have radically altered the basic ecological systems that make life possible on this planet for ourselves (and potentially many other species). The moniker may thus be a potent warning—or it could be a nascent epitaph if it goes unheeded. If it is indeed the case that the Anthropocene represents the seeds of our demise rather than a rapid reclaiming of our capacity to change course, then it begs the question of what’s next. In this workshop, we will explore some of the key alternative renderings of the Anthropocene, and collectively inquire as to what the next epoch might look like.