Elizabeth Povinelli: New Book on Geontopower

978-0-8223-6233-3_prElizabeth Povinelli has a new book forthcoming with Duke, details here. The write up on the book is below, followed by a recent presentation on “Toxic Sovereignties in Late Settler Liberalism” from last October. The talk comes from the book (but you’ll need to fast forward a couple of hours in, to 2:32ish, to get to her talk).

In Geontologies Elizabeth A. Povinelli continues her project of mapping the current conditions of late liberalism by offering a bold retheorization of power. Finding Foucauldian biopolitics unable to adequately reveal contemporary mechanisms of power and governance, Povinelli describes a mode of power she calls geontopower, which operates through the regulation of the distinction between life and nonlife and the figures of the desert, the animist, and the virus. Geontologies examines this formation of power from the perspective of Indigenous Australian maneuvers against the settler state. And it probes how our contemporary critical languages—Anthropogenic climate change, plasticity, new materialism, antinormativity—often unwittingly transform their struggles against geontopower into a deeper entwinement within it. A woman who became a river, a snake-like entity who spawns the fog, plesiosaurus fossils and vast networks of rock weirs: in asking how these different forms of existence refuse incorporation into the vocabularies of western theory Povinelli provides a revelatory new way to understand a form of power long self-evident in certain regimes of settler late liberalism but now becoming visible much further.

Deborah Cramer: The narrow ledge – a tiny bird, an ancient crab, an epic journey

Fascinating new book out from Deborah Cramer, description from Yale follows with a talk from Deborah Cramer below:

c3576c04e438728a6bb1a919c5755e4cEach year, red knots, sandpipers weighing no more than a coffee cup, fly a near-miraculous 19,000 miles from the tip of South America to their nesting grounds in the Arctic and back. Along the way, they double their weight by gorging on millions of tiny horseshoe crab eggs. Horseshoe crabs, ancient animals that come ashore but once a year, are vital to humans, too: their blue blood safeguards our health. Now, the rufa red knot, newly listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act, will likely face extinction in the foreseeable future across its entire range, 40 states and 27 countries. The first United States bird listed because global warming imperils its existence, it will not be the last: the red knot is the twenty-first century’s “canary in the coal mine.” Logging thousands of miles following the knots, shivering with the birds out on the snowy tundra, tracking them down in bug-infested marshes, Cramer vividly portrays what’s at stake for millions of shorebirds and hundreds of millions of people living at the sea edge. The Narrow Edge offers an uplifting portrait of the tenacity of tiny birds and of the many people who, on the sea edge we all share, keep knots flying and offer them safe harbor.
Deborah Cramer is the author of Great Waters: An Atlantic Passage and Smithsonian Ocean: Our Water, Our World She lives in Gloucester, MA.

Kim Tallbear: Science and Whiteness

Erik Swyngedouw – Design after planning: examining the shift from episystemology to topology