Yearly Archives: 2012

Call for Papers: Under Western Skies 2: Environment, Community, and Culture in North America

This post comes to you from Cultura21

Building on the success of Under Western Skies: Climate, Culture, and Change in Western North America in October 2010, Under Western Skies 2 welcomes academics from across the disciplines as well as members of artistic and activist communities, non- and for-profit organizations, government, labour, and NGOs to address the environmental challenges faced by human and nonhuman actors across North America.

From October the 10th to 13th 2012UWS 2 will take place on Mount Royal University campus in the LEED Gold-certified Roderick Mah Centre for Continuous Learning.

The six keynote speakers can be found listed here.

With its mandate for both interdisciplinarity and community outreach, UWS 2 broadens the geographical scope of the inaugural conference but retains its wide call for contributions from all environmental fields of inquiry and endeavor, including the humanities, natural and social sciences, North American studies, public policy, business, and law.  Artistic, creative, and non-academic proposals are also welcome.  Possible directions may include, but are not limited to

agriculture, food, and food security
alpine and glacial change
animal rights and commodification
automobility/transportation/infrastructure
borders and transnational issues
climate shock
collaboration between scientific and non-scientific communities
continental “perimeter security”
direct action and activism
ecology or nature?
“ecoterrorism”
environmental catastrophe and community
environmental devastation as neo-colonialism
environmental economies
environmental humanities
environmental racism and justice
environmental technologies
feedlots and runoff
forests and forestry
fracking
the Great Lakes
historical perspectives
human and nonhuman migration
indigenous environmental kinship
indigenous land, air, and water rights
indigenous worldviews and sovereignties
interdisciplinarity and transdisciplinarity
invasive species
the Keystone Pipeline and continental integration
law and public policy in North America
literary, filmic, and new media representations
marine ecosystems
national and regional parks
new continental weather patterns
North American bioregions
North American nuclear culture and power after Fukushima
North American studies
oil culture
the politics of meat
resilient communities and solidarity
restoration, reclamation, reparation
the rights of nature
seeds and seed patents
senses of place
technology as social construction
tourism and amenity migration
urban biodiversity
water rights, watersheds, and river systems
the “wilding” of North American cities like Detroit
wildlife and animality
women’s, gender and/or sexuality studies
youth, education, and activism

A selection of papers will go forward for an edited book publication or special journal issue following UWS 2.  (The collection of edited papers stemming from UWS 2010 is forthcoming from Wilfrid Laurier University Press as a part of its Environmental Humanities Series.)

Proposals should run no more than 250 words in length and be attached to an email as a .doc or .docx file. Proposals for readings, panels, screenings, displays, and workshops are also welcome.

Direct all proposals, together with brief bio and contact information, to Dr. Robert Boschman atand to Dr. Mario Trono at.

Check for regular updates regarding UWS 2 at the conference website: www.skies.mtroyal.ca.

Closing Date: Monday, January 23, 2012

Reposted from www.skies.mtroyal.ca/cfp/

The Call for Papers is now also available in French on the homepage http://skies.mtroyal.ca/frenchcfp/

Cultura21 is a transversal, translocal network, constituted of an international level grounded in several Cultura21 organizations around the world.

Cultura21′s international network, launched in April 2007, offers the online and offline platform for exchanges and mutual learning among its members.

The activities of Cultura21 at the international level are coordinated by a team representing the different Cultura21 organizations worldwide, and currently constituted of:

– Sacha Kagan (based in Lüneburg, Germany) and Rana Öztürk (based in Berlin, Germany)
– Oleg Koefoed and Kajsa Paludan (both based in Copenhagen, Denmark)
– Hans Dieleman (based in Mexico-City, Mexico)
– Francesca Cozzolino and David Knaute (both based in Paris, France)

Cultura21 is not only an informal network. Its strength and vitality relies upon the activities of several organizations around the world which are sharing the vision and mission of Cultura21

Go to Cultura21

Open Call: Power of Words 2012

The 9th Power of Words conference will be held October 26-29, 2012 at Pendle Hill near Philadelphia, PA.

Call for Proposals: Part of what makes the Power of Words an amazing conference is a palpable sense of connection and homecoming that comes from meeting others who are living their lives powerfully and authentically. We would love to have you come, and we would love even more if you’d consider submitting a proposal to have some of your work be shared there. The call for workshop and performance proposals is here, and we hope you’ll consider submitting one, helping us build that web of connection and depth.

From now until the end of January 2012, we will be accepting proposals for people interesting in offering their work to others at the conference. Once January ends our Proposal Selection Committee will spend time together reading them over, and we will announce accepted workshops in February.  As before, we will focus on four themes for workshops: Narrative Medicine / Healing Stories, Right Livelihood, Social Activism, and Engaged Spirituality. To read more about the details of these areas, please check out their descriptions on the conference page.

A difference this year is the option to submit a proposal for performance time during main sessions as well as workshops. Because the Network is committed to lifting each other up and highlighting the amazing gifts, talents, and skills that people possess, we wanted to open up some of the performance time as well: a limited number of slots during the main, all-conference sessions will be devoted to offerings submitted via the proposal process. We are excited about what will emerge!

The form for proposal submission is here, and we hope you both (a) consider proposing something yourself and (b) send this information to people you know who have something powerful to offer.

Keynoter: Jimmy Santiago Baca: Born in New Mexico of Indio-Mexican descent, Jimmy Santiago Baca was raised first by his grandmother and later sent to an orphanage. A runaway at age 13, it was after Baca was sentenced to five years in a maximum security prison that he began to turn his life around: he learned to read and write and unearthed a voracious passion for poetry.  During a fateful conflict with another inmate, Jimmy was shaken by the voices of Neruda and Lorca, and made a choice that would alter his destiny. Instead of becoming a hardened criminal, he emerged from prison a writer. He went on to send out his poetry, earn a GED, write and publish, earning a Pushcart Prize, American Book Award, International Hispanic Heritage Award and many other honors. His publications include the memoir A Place to Stand, volumes of poetry and more. Baca has devoted his post-prison life to writing and teaching others who are overcoming hardship. His themes include American Southwest barrios, addiction, injustice, education, community, love and beyond. He has conducted hundreds of writing workshops in prisons, community centers, libraries, and universities throughout the country. He also founded Ceder Tree, Inc., a nonprofit foundation that works to give people of all walks of life the opportunity to become educated and to improve their lives.

Other Features: Deb Hensley, who founded “When Did We Stop Singing?” and is a founding member of the improvisational singing group Improvox, will be leading a workshop to help us return to our native voices, and also sharing her powerful performance on how we can connect with the natural world through the magic of birdsong. Kao Kue, Hmong spoken word artist who combines poetry and song, will perform her astonishing art.

What are the key aspects of well-being?

This post comes to you from EcoArtScotland

The UK Office of National Statistics is currently consulting on a framework and headline indicators for measuring well-being.  This is an incredibly important development, intended in the long run to provide alternatives to simplistic measures such as GDP.

The consultation tests the assumption that the following domains add up to a sense of well-being (quoted in full because of the importance of this work):

Individual well-being  It is proposed that this domain should include individual’s feelings of satifaction with life, whether they feel their life is worthwhile and their positive and negative emotions. That is, this domain will include only the headline subjective well-being measures to be derived from the new ONS survey data. Subjective measures would be included with objective measures in the other domains.

Our relationships   This was chosen as a domain because it reflects many of the responses received during the national debate and because many theories of well-being report the importance of this area to an individual’s well-being. The scope of this domain is intended to be the extent and type of individuals’ relationships to their immediate family, their friends and the community around them.

Health  Includes areas which were thought to be important by respondents to the national debate.  An individual’s health is recognised as an important component of their well-being. It is anticipated that this domain would contain both subjective and objective measures of physical and mental health.

What we do  Aims to include work and leisure activities and the balance between them, all of which were common themes in the national debate responses. In this domain there are likely to be measures of aspects of work and leisure activities and of work-life balance.

Where we live  Is about individual’s dwelling, their local environment and the type of community in which they live. Measures will be sought which reflect having a safe, clean and pleasant environment, access to facilities and being part of a cohesive community.  ONS has taken Defra advice on the indicators in this area.

Personal finance  Is intended to include household income and wealth, its distribution and stability. Measures within this would also be used during analysis to address the concepts of poverty and equality mentioned in the national debate responses.

Education and skills  Various aspects of education and life-long learning were mentioned during the national debate. The scope of this domain is the stock of human capital in the labour market with some more information about levels of educational achievement and skills.

Governance Democracy, trust in institutions and views about the UK’s interaction with other countries, all of which were included in responses to the national debate, are intended to form the scope of this domain.

The economy  Is an important contextual measure for national well-being. The scope of this domain is intended to be measures of economic output and stock.

The natural environment  Is proposed as a domain in order to reflect areas mentioned during the national debate such as climate change, the natural environment, the effects our activities have on the global environment and natural disasters. It is planned to include measures which reflect these areas at the national level.  ONS has taken Defra advice on the indicators for this area.

If you then look at the measures, the issues become more troubling.  For instance, whilst generic issues such as climate change are referenced, there is no measure around access to greenspace within everyday life – the natural environment is remote.

The fact that there is no reference to culture is deeply problematic given the substantial research in the Nordic countries which demonstrates that participation in cultural activities has an impact on lifespan.

Finally, there is no reference to any spiritual dimension as contributing to well-being, and whilst modern over-developed Western culture is largely secularised, to omit this area is to diminish the scope of the understanding of well-being.

Responses to this survey need to be made by 23rd January 2012.

ecoartscotland is a resource focused on art and ecology for artists, curators, critics, commissioners as well as scientists and policy makers. It includes ecoartscotland papers, a mix of discussions of works by artists and critical theoretical texts, and serves as a curatorial platform.

It has been established by Chris Fremantle, producer and research associate with On The Edge ResearchGray’s School of Art, The Robert Gordon University. Fremantle is a member of a number of international networks of artists, curators and others focused on art and ecology.
Go to EcoArtScotland

Trailer Sows Ground With Creative Seeds

The rain didn’t stop us from having fun on Sunday November 20 when our 1951 Spartan Trailer served as a video booth for people to record their stories about food access and equity at Cornerstone Theatre’s Block Party. The party was the last in a two-week series of events called Creative Seeds – performances, discussions and learning opportunities – that kicked off a major Cornerstone Project, The Hunger Cycle – nine world premiere plays that will be performed over the next five years. In preparation for a show we plan for July, Sam Breen performed Bob Dylan’s poem “Last Thoughts On Woody Guthrie” accompanied by musician Kevin Robinson. Share YOUR stories of hunger and food at www.cornerstonetheater.org.  Cornerstone will post them on their blog and use them to inspire their work on the Hunger Cycle. 

This post is part of a series documenting Sam Breen’a Spartan Restoration Project. Please see his first post here and check out the archive here. The CSPA is helping Sam by serving in an advisory role, offering modest support and featuring Sam’s Progress by syndicating his feed from http://spartantrailerrestoration.wordpress.com as part of our CSPA Supports Program.

Ecocultures 2012: Transitions to Sustainability

This post comes to you from Cultura21

The conference Ecocultures 2012 takes place at the University of Essex from the 17th to the 18th of April.

The aim of Ecocultures 2012 is to show, how communities can adapt successfully to social-ecological change and thus reach the maintenance of resilience and the enhancement of wellbeing. Ecocultures live sustainable and we can learn from them regarding our lifestyle and in order to deal with the changes we are about to encounter e.g. climate change and resource degradation. These immanent problems need to be faced on the level of individual behaviour, community actions and state-level responses as well as international governance.

Multi-disciplinary perspectives of the barriers and bridges encountered by Ecocultures and how they can contribute to a global transition to sustainability will be presented at the conference. Furthermore the potential of concepts for creative and sustainable adaption to the new conditions will be discussed.
At the University of Essex the Ecocultures research program has the task to examine the responding of traditional and newly emerging communities to these challenges. Sustainable lifestyles and possible ways for transition are analysed.

Ecocultures 2012 is supposed to bring together members of Ecocultures, researchers and policy makers in order to develop alternative ways of development.

Submissions from academics, policy makers as well as from development practitioners engaged in work on resilience and sustainability are invited. Possible themes for Papers are the following ones:

  • Case studies on communities successfully adapting to social-ecological change;
  • Historic examples of highly resilient communities and their current status;
  • Analyses of the ‘traditional’ practices contributing to sustainable lifestyles, the stresses to which these provide resilience, and the barriers and bridges to the continued practice of such traditional lifestyles in today’s world;
  • The emergence of ‘new’ Ecocultures, such as cultural revitalisation initiatives, ‘back to the land’ initiatives and the transition movement; the barriers and bridges to sustainability within these initiatives, the potential for their spread, their contribution to well-being and to social-ecological resilience at community level and beyond;
  • Critical analyses of current and alternative notions of ‘development’, ‘sustainability’ and ‘resilience’;
  • Analyses of struggles for resources: how do, for example, the extractive industries and multi-national corporations affect the sustainability of communities;
  • Conflicts between different notions and practices of ‘sustainability’;
  • Meta-analyses of the social, economic, political and cultural barriers and bridges to sustainability;
  • Analyses of the role played by current policies, economic and corporate initiatives for ‘sustainability’, including the potential for sustainable governance, the links between international trade and sustainable growth, and the potential role played by consumer awareness, environmental regulations, new methods of environmental valuation and corporate social responsibility initiatives.

Deadline for paper proposals is the 16th of January 2012. They should be sent to Prof. Steffen Böhm (steffen [at] essex [dot] ac [dot] uk) and Zareen Bharucha (zpbhar [at] essex [dot] ac [dot] uk) with the subject ‘Ecocultures 2012’. Authors will be notified of acceptance by 30th January 2012.
For general inquiries, please email Zareen Bharucha (zpbhar [at] essex [dot] ac [dot] uk)

Cultura21 is a transversal, translocal network, constituted of an international level grounded in several Cultura21 organizations around the world.

Cultura21′s international network, launched in April 2007, offers the online and offline platform for exchanges and mutual learning among its members.

The activities of Cultura21 at the international level are coordinated by a team representing the different Cultura21 organizations worldwide, and currently constituted of:

– Sacha Kagan (based in Lüneburg, Germany) and Rana Öztürk (based in Berlin, Germany)
– Oleg Koefoed and Kajsa Paludan (both based in Copenhagen, Denmark)
– Hans Dieleman (based in Mexico-City, Mexico)
– Francesca Cozzolino and David Knaute (both based in Paris, France)

Cultura21 is not only an informal network. Its strength and vitality relies upon the activities of several organizations around the world which are sharing the vision and mission of Cultura21

Go to Cultura21

Call for Student Artists

Attention student artists!

The University Museum at SIUC is seeking applications for Sustain, a juried collegiate recycled art exhibition. Sustain has been organized to feature college artists working with recycled and waste materials in their work.

Three winners will be selected whose work and artist profile will be printed in a pamphlet about the exhibition and in the online catalog on the SIUC University Museum website.  The online catalog will also feature all of the exhibitions selected works.

Artwork will be selected for the exhibition on the basis that it consists of at least 70% waste material, and innovatively transforms this material into an intriguing work of art.  Jurors for the exhibition will be recycled glass artists, John Drury and Robbie Miller of C.U.D who have pioneered methods for creating art from recyclable materials.

The prospectus is available on our website,  http://www.museum.siu.edu/documents/Sustain%20PDF.pdf

Questions contact Nate Steinbrink Curator of Exhibits, nstein@siu.edu

Tree species maps for European forests

This post comes to you from EcoArtScotland

European Forest Institute – Tree species maps for European forests: useful resource on major tree species down to the 1km level accessible as GIS data.  The UK’s Forestry Commission makes their datasets available (thanks Tim).

ecoartscotland is a resource focused on art and ecology for artists, curators, critics, commissioners as well as scientists and policy makers. It includes ecoartscotland papers, a mix of discussions of works by artists and critical theoretical texts, and serves as a curatorial platform.

It has been established by Chris Fremantle, producer and research associate with On The Edge ResearchGray’s School of Art, The Robert Gordon University. Fremantle is a member of a number of international networks of artists, curators and others focused on art and ecology.
Go to EcoArtScotland