an initiative to connect initiatives
Eco-read platform is an interdisciplinary platform aiming to invite critical literary, philosophical, historical and artistic contributions to the discussion on continuity between human and non-human. The main idea of the research-, community-building- and publishing aims of Eco-read rests on the concept of narrative identity & narrative time in the ‘Anthropocene(s)’ – as in first person ecocritical life-writing (or other forms of 1st person expression).
Eco-read offers SUM: UiO‘s Centre for Development and the Environment a widened scope of possibilities to access and discuss topics of Environmental Humanities. Physically situated in Oslo, Norway, the core of Eco-read consists of a reading & discussion group with regular meetings, creative working group and a movie group. The online space opens doors for other initiatives, such as online submission and publishing, streaming life panels and connecting networks. Eco-read’s aim is to put in touch motivations and yearnings for a better and more just world – long term, through unveiling the already existing connections between the, generally believed, “divergent” academic and artistic, as well as ‘personal and planetary’ climate-concerns and their respective, again, contrary to the general belief, parallel endeavors.
Eco-read book club forms the core of this platform. Eco-read holds monthly meetings where not-only-green-texts are assessed from an environmental perspective. Environment, as a setting, is present in every narrative, by necessity. Eco-read focuses on the links between the human and more-than-human in and throughout the narrative space.
Critical discussions around the ambiguities of both production, existence and reception of nature-writing or green discourse are welcome and needed. Such discussions can co-unfold only through the process of dialogue. Communication is never only-human, never only-linguistic and never only-academic. Both, as re-presented in the narrative space we analyse, as well as through the practice of our discussions — listening, tuning in, and openness, without naivety towards one’s own embedment, are the necessary ingredients to shape gentle and considerate modalities for the “changes” of today and tomorrow. In our discussions, both structures and theories gain on creativity in hunt for the possible.
The two main subsections here are:
1) discussion focused specifically on the continuities between the human and more-than-human in the first-person autobiographical narratives,
2) generating a general map of ecocriticism, which, in time, aims to form a reference point for a broader audience.
This is where you soon will be able to join a common screening of diverse movies, always followed by a critical discussion. You can also follow our online logg from these meetings and partake in updating the online movie-review “library”.
In other words: Follow the discussion on and from eco-movie’s regular meetings,
and/or help create a review catalog of not-only-“green”-movies assessed from an environmental perspective.
The utopia of a better tomorrow happens in the place that is present to us today, and words alone are sometimes not enough to express the potentialities of change. Art and the symbolic or “image/ina-ry” becomes necessary to communicate the uncanny, or entangled. Regardless of the medium you use, we will be happy to publish your creative work on environment-human relations, care and companionship.
Eco-read welcomes photographs, paintings, drawings, poems, creative writing, lyrics, music, or combined techniques. It is important to us that your work expresses and communicates some of the aspects, or conundrums of continuities between the human and non-human grounded sympoiesis. The multi-species coexistence always already brings with itself chances and promises, sometimes only accessible in modes of thinking and being that are alien to the western “logos”. Picture and the real are continuous with each other, as hinted at by Eduardo Kohn in How Forests Think (2013). Images, figures, forests, environments and metaphors think and talk to us by mirroring themselves “back” through our creativity.