Arcadiana

A Blog about Literature, Culture and the Environment

Teaching Information Literacy in a Class on Global Environmental Justice

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My class on Literatures of Global Environmental Justice was envisioned in the context of a global pandemic and a lockdown when misinformation about COVID-19 was being spread by the then US president with disastrous consequences for public health and safety. It was a moment that reminded me that teaching students the importance of information literacy was more urgent than ever, if we were to think of an environmentally just society.

Αρκαδία, Here We Go Again: A Journey from ‘Pastoral’ to ‘Post-Pastoral’. And Beyond.

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Image by Judith Prins on Unsplash “Small pleasures must correct great tragedies” V. Sackville-West, The Garden, 1946 It has not been long since I first decided to devote (at least) three years of my life to the study of pastoral poetry. I remember that I was reading The Land (1926), the delightful – and often …

The Chernobyl TV Series and the Impossibility of (Narrative) Closure

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The 2019 HBO mini-series Chernobyl has been praised as the best series of all times. Its account of the 1986 nuclear disaster in Ukraine and the fates of those dealing with its aftermath touched millions of viewers – but something about the appraising reviews of the series rubbed me the wrong way. It is true that the series is “as stunning as it is gripping”, as a Guardian review by Rebecca Nicholson revels (2019).

Lehrprojekt: Nature Writing und Übersetzung

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Das Sommersemester 2020 war in mehrerlei Hinsicht ein ungewöhnliches. Der zwölfwöchige Bachelor-Kurs, den ich unterrichtete, war mein erster, noch dazu im Online-Format, und ich hatte vor, ihn direkt mit einem kreativen Lehrexperiment zu beginnen. Es ging um die Übersetzung von aktuellem britischen Nature Writing, insbesondere von Auszügen aus Mark Cockers A Claxton Diary: Further Field Notes from a Small Planet (2019).

Teaching Creative Nature Writing and Translation

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The summer term of 2020 was an unusual one in several ways. The undergraduate course I taught was my first one, on top of that in online format, and I started with a creative teaching experiment right away. The twelve-week course was on the translation of current British Nature Writing, looking specifically at excerpts from Mark Cocker’s A Claxton Diary: Further Field Notes from a Small Planet (2019).

Teaching Environmental Literature Online

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The COVID-19 pandemic has forced teachers and students to reimagine environmental literature classrooms. Spaces where we once discussed environmental literatures at the same time and place have been replaced with online “classrooms” that are scattered across time zones and a wide range of learning conditions, where family or financial responsibilities often compete with curricular deadlines for attention.

Review: Virtual Opening and Streaming Festival ‘Critical Zones’ (May 2020)

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The 22nd of May saw the launch of Critical Zones: Observatories for an Earthly Politics, a ‘thought exhibition’ at ZKM Karlsruhe. The exhibition – opening physically on the 24th of July, but currently available online – began with a streaming festival: three days of films, lectures, and panel discussions, mediated and moderated by Bruno Latour, Peter Weibel, Barbara Zoé Kiolbassa, Dominika Szope, and Annett Holzheid.

From Apartheid South Africa to Climate Apartheid: Mongane Wally Serote’s “City Johannesburg”

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In one of the most recognisable South African poems of the twentieth century, Mongane Wally Serote’s“City Johannesburg” (written circa 1971), the black narrator of the poem searches through the pockets of his trousers and jacket for his passbook as he mockingly salutes the city of Johannesburg, the sprawling metropolis that developed out of the discovery of gold in the surrounding Witwatersrand gold reef in the 1880s.