Tuesday, 16 February 2016

Could a Humanities approach to the Environmental Crisis work?

Are we clever – or is it just vanity?
Things are changing – we need more humanity.
If the sea levels rise,
It is nature that dies,
We must act - or the future's insanity.

I have just completed the FutureLearn course “Environmental Humanities – Remaking Nature” run by the University of New South Wales. This looks at the way in which the Humanities can temper the scientific and technological approach to the problem. The course highlighted the weaknesses in an overtly anthropocentric approach which looks for sophisticated technological solutions (which will probably not succeed) and which ignores the fact that we are part of the natural world.

To me the most important part of the course related to helping people to understand what is happening by using various storytelling techniques – which is why this post starts with a limerick. The course, coupled with ideas from other FutureLearn courses, also influenced my new mission statement, and the new approach taken in presenting posts on this blog.

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