2nd Annual Conference of the EHJustice Network: Global Environmental Justice and Its Limits: Complexities of Time and Space
We are delighted to announce the Call for Contributions for the second Annual Conference of EHJustice, the Network for Global Justice and the Environmental Humanities: Transformative Engagements between Academia and Civil Society funded by the Independent Research Fund Denmark (DFF). We warmly welcome proposals from diverse participants including junior and senior researchers, environmental activists, artists, journalists as well as other civil society actors who wish to engage in a dialogue about concepts, practices, and multiple understandings of global justice in a moment of mounting environmental urgencies.
With this year's conference, we intend to bring together scholarly and activist experiences that speak from different backgrounds or that crisscross the boundaries of North and South. The conference will feature keynote lectures by scholars and activists reflecting multiple approaches to questions of justice linked to their situated and specific contexts. It will further include traditional panel and round-table formats alongside more experimental forms of participation such as walks and transformative design challenges. We thus encourage proposals for innovative formats, interactive events, and multimedia presentations, alongside more traditional academic genres, such as talks, papers, and roundtable discussions. Overall, we solicit diverse kinds of contributions that address the conference’s themes and topics as they also promote cross-boundary scholarly and societal engagement.
Paper contributions may be proposed by submitting a maximum 300 word abstract. Other kinds of contributions may be proposed by submitting a maximum 300 word description, accompanied by (visual or other) materials presenting the proposed format. Examples of such contributions may be - but are not limited to - performances, film screenings, dialogue-provoking exhibitions of objects or artefacts, conversations about dilemmas, etc. We also welcome groups that want to propose paper panels or other assemblages of contributions. In this case, please offer maximum 300 words about each aspect of the overall collection/assemblage. For all submissions, please indicate if you wish to participate on-site in Aarhus, Denmark, or online. Be sure to include name, organisational affiliation (if relevant), and email address for all people included in the proposal. See information below about our limited travel support.
We intend to spark discussions about plural understandings of justice by exploring how scholars, activists and other civil society actors relate with the concept, and how they negotiate justice claims through space and time. We explicitly seek to address the temporal and spatial dimensions of global environmental justice by considering how colonial/postcolonial trajectories inform mobilization and communication strategies in ongoing conflicts over resources, territories and the distribution of risks. Crucial to speaking back to and denouncing global environmental injustices are questions of how to give shape to stories of global justice. How do we tell "terrible" stories that are still motivating, empowering and hopeful – if these are the stories to tell?
In particular, we intend to discuss how the different temporalities and histories inherent to different notions of global justice play out in environmental justice movements and how imperial/colonial pathways of extraction shape environmental justice claims and practices of transformative future-making. Furthermore, we intend to explore how to give form to (through narration, storytelling, performance, theories, video, writing) such histories and how stories – or other forms – can be assistive in breaking the course of environmental injustice.
Environmental justice practices often include strong engagements with histories, including via the documentation of histories of pollution, expulsions from homelands, alienating forms of urban planning, and the more-than-human lifeworlds damaged by industrial agriculture or buried beneath concrete. Justice movements work with histories not only to trace practices of harm, but also to identify inspiration for ongoing struggles in examples of past resistances. Importantly, they often experiment with other modes of narrating pasts – including histories that challenge logics of growth and denaturalize state claims. Thus, when we seek to focus on "histories" within the context of this conference, we are not interested merely in the work of historians or in mainstream histories. Instead, we are broadly interested in everyday ways of invoking the past within practices of activism and in relation to wide-ranging questions about justice, ecologies, and environments.
How do histories matter to current (global) environmental justice practices?
How can a historical understanding of imperial modes of living and material histories of modernization inform transformative practices today?
How do we identify and work with the (hi)stories that need to be told, and in what ways do the mode of telling them matter?
What past modes of resistance/resilience can and do inform environmental justice practices?
What temporalities enliven diverse practices of conserving, restoring and caring?
What is the relationship between histories of colonialism and current debates and practices around conservation and environmental stewardship?
How have notions of global environmental justice evolved historically?
How can we account for historical uncertainty and its role in questions of justice?
What kinds of storytelling and other ways of knowing and telling about pasts can help animate more just presents and futures?
What kinds of memories and uses of the past are at play in discussions over loss, irreparable damage and ecological grief?
What roles do natural history and historical ecology research play in justice struggles?
How can (post)colonial natural collections be appropriated/reworked in contemporary justice struggles?
Do historical renderings of global environmental justice enable or complicate transnational solidarities?
Submission & questions: EHJustice@cas.au.dk
Deadline to submit: 22 August 2022
Funding: We have very little funding for travel expenses. In practice, this means that most participants should be prepared to either fund their own travel or participate online. We will use the funds that we do have to support people with financial need who think they would especially benefit from in person attendance. If you would like to be considered for funding, please note this at the bottom of your submission, along with a short explanation of why you are seeking funding.
Further information on the network: https://www.arts.au.dk/ehjustice
Local organizers: Georg Fischer (firstname.lastname@example.org), Heather Swanson (email@example.com)
EHJustice core network members: Astrid Oberborbeck Andersen, Georg Fischer, Heather Swanson, Kristine Samson, Malayna Raftopoulos, Mikkel Fugl Eskjær, Stefan Gaarsmand Jacobsen
Description of the network: The EHJustice network is funded by the Independent Research Fund Denmark for a period from 2021-2023 and orchestrates a set of conversations on global environmental justice at the intersection of academia and civil society (focusing on activists and NGOs). It seeks to strengthen the environmental humanities in Denmark and its links to civil society, while also developing tools and concepts for a new public environmental humanities that connects Denmark to the world. Through the lens of global justice, the network seeks to probe and redefine the boundaries between scholarly and societal engagement by inquiring into new modes of intervention and by underscoring the real-world relevance of humanistic renderings of human-nonhuman entanglements in times of global ecological crisis. The network is grounded in two complementary ideas: 1) That the humanities would be theoretically enriched by more engagement with newly emerging forms of environmental civil society engagement and 2) That humanities scholars have much that they could be contributing to public environmental debates. The network is a collaboration between Aarhus University, Roskilde University and Aalborg University together with Danish and international partners.