Anthropocene, art, capital

ef183b46d2a32e1fc9dac9f7c6d9029eDuke University has a new exhibit entitled “Recording the Anthropocene” and it looks quite interesting (see pic!), I’d encourage you to check it out!

Also, Jason Moore has been offering some interesting thoughts on the anthropocene over at his blog. One of his contentions is that the idea brings humanity (the anthropos) together as an undifferentiated whole. This, to me, is a bit of an odd claim. You can get away with a much weaker one – certain forms of life have come to dominate planetary systems through their increased material throughput (i.e. massive consumption and expenditure of energy/waste).

Moore claims the anthropocene doesn’t ask us to think about the relationships of power, inequality or injustice that have beset us at all. And I completely disagree. Moore goes on to explain how the anthropocene obscures these existing relationships in some detail. He does so all the while working in a Marxian vein where he never explains the difference between a “species-being” (as Marx termed it) and the “anthropos” he sets up as the target of his criticisms. I’d be interested to know where the relevant differences lie for Moore.

I have a second query for Moore, which is why he decided to work out a critique of the anthropocene using the trope of “Nature” as a touchstone and the claimed “society-nature” relationship as a foil for the argument put forth. What about doing ecology without Nature, as Tim Morton has suggested?

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