7 January 2020 (Tuesday), 18h30 // Keynote Lecture
Scott Knowles is a historian of modern cities, technology and public policy, with a particular focus on risk and disaster. His most recent book is The Disaster Experts: Mastering Risk in Modern America (UPenn Press, 2011) and he is series co-editor of “Critical Studies in Risk and Disaster” (UPenn Press, launch 2014). Presently, he is also a faculty research fellow of the Disaster Research Center at the University of Delaware. Since 2011, he has been a member of the Fukushima Forum collaborative research community, with which he is currently co-authoring an edited volume on the Fukushima disasters. With Amy Slaton and Tiago Saraiva, he hosted the Anthropocene Campus Philadelphia at Drexel University in 2017.
9 JANUARY 2020 (Thursday), 18h30 // Keynote Lecture
Ten years ago, historian Dipesh Chakrabarty published “The Climate of History: Four Theses,” the first of several Anthropocene-focused articles that proved to be as enduringly influential as they are controversial. Criticised for supporting a species-level universality that disregards class, race, and gender in the shaping of humanity’s ecological footprint, apparently at odds with his background in postcolonial theory, Chakrabarty’s “Four Theses” brought about an extensive discussion on who is the “Anthropos” in Anthropocene—and how the socio-economic and political divide between the global North and South factors into the interlocking threats endangering humans and non-humans on Earth. More recently, Chakrabarty has called for a shift in human modes of being and knowing, asking whether the humanities can “overcome their hallowed and deeply set human-centrism and learn to look at the human world also from nonhuman points of view”.
Dipesh Chakrabarty (1948, Calcutta, IN) is professor of History and South East Studies at Chicago University. The author of Provincializing Europe (2000) and a leading historian in the area of postcolonial studies, in the last decade he penned several influential articles on climate change and the Anthropocene, including “The Climate of History: Four Theses” (2009), “Postcolonial Studies and the Challenge of Climate Change” (2012), “Climate and Capital: On Conjoined Histories” (2014), and “Humanities in the Anthropocene: The Crisis of an Enduring Kantian Fable” (2016). In 2014, Chakrabarty received the Toynbee Prize in recognition of his significant contributions to global history.