Friday, February 24, 2023

The Artist as a Horseshoe Crab, Frying Pan, w a Crush on You, CWCF


  1. 1/this moving design definitely deserves at least honorable mention in a 'graphic arts with words' contest

    2/a horseshoe crab - i was, as an undergraduate, briefly a biology major, and in lab we performed vivisection on horseshoe crabs - to measure impulses along the optic nerve - we treated them as non-sentient beings, alas

    3/and speaking of the biosphere, last week i read 'the collapse of western civilization: a view from the future', by oreskes and conway - It's actually pretty hopeful inasmuch as it hypothesizes itself as being written in china in the second people's republic in the late 24th century - and while africa and australia are no longer inhabited, major portions of the other continents are

    4/on the same topic, this week i received in the mail

    An Inconvenient Apocalypse: Environmental Collapse, Climate Crisis, and the Fate of Humanity
    by Wes Jackson and Robert Jensen

    Confronting harsh ecological realities and the multiple cascading crises facing our world today, An Inconvenient Apocalypse argues that humanity's future will be defined not by expansion but by contraction.

    For decades, our world has understood that we are on the brink of an apocalypse--and yet the only implemented solutions have been small and convenient, feel-good initiatives that avoid unpleasant truths about the root causes of our impending disaster. Wes Jackson and Robert Jensen argue that we must reconsider the origins of the consumption crisis and the challenges we face in creating a survivable future. Longstanding assumptions about economic growth and technological progress--the dream of a future of endless bounty--are no longer tenable. The climate crisis has already progressed beyond simple or nondisruptive solutions. The end result will be apocalyptic; the only question now is how bad it will be.

    Jackson and Jensen examine how geographic determinism shaped our past and led to today's social injustice, consumerist culture, and high-energy/high-technology dystopias. The solution requires addressing today's systemic failures and confronting human nature by recognizing the limits of our ability to predict how those failures will play out over time.

    Though these massive challenges can feel overwhelming, Jackson and Jensen weave a secular reading of theological concepts--the prophetic, the apocalyptic, a saving remnant, and grace--to chart a collective, realistic path for humanity not only to survive our apocalypse but also to emerge on the other side with a renewed appreciation of the larger living world.

    this passage from the introduction convinced me to buy this book:

    So, who are we?

    That takes us back to what we put up front: we are two old white guys from the United States, living pretty comfortably with good retirement plans. Again, that is simply a way of saying that we recognize the need for critical self-reflection about identity, especially in this political and cultural moment. We realize that much of our success is not the product of unusual effort or extraordinary intelligence. Both of us have tried to use our abilities to the fullest, but obvious advantages have come our way because we were born white, male, in the United States, during a period of rapid economic expansion. If we had been born good-looking, we would have had it all.

  2. You have provided this afternoon's Art-kick!