Date: Sept 17, Oct 29, Nov 19 (semester 1), TBA (semester 2)
Registration: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.comfirstname.lastname@example.org
Credits: 6 ECTS
Organizers: Joost de Bloois and Jeff Diamanti
Through reading groups, masterclasses, and public lectures from international scholars and artists engaged in the creative and theoretical study of ecological relation and crisis, this year two of “Ecology of Forms” will move through distinct but overlapping forms that focalize contestation and collectivity across a multitude of vectors: economic, legal, environmental, architectural, infrastructural, cultural, and so on. Forms can include anything from a watershed, general strike, or class action lawsuit; subsea mine or natural gas pipeline; or an assembly of bodies in the thick of a morning commute. Forms put into relation on the terms of their arrangement, historicity, and materiality. Some more obviously than others. Maybe there are new forms emerging amidst the crumbling in of the present. Maybe there are some that we tend to overlook because they’re so sedimented into our experience of the world that we forget they are themselves provisional and mutable. And maybe there are forms that we want to expose for the conceit of their (abrasive) arrangements: the oil terminal, for instance, or the fossil fueled family. Furthermore, we will ask which new forms of (non-academic) writing and thinking are needed to tackle such issues. We will look into different forms of writing and visualizing possible ‘ecologies of form.’ Part of the idea is to gather theoretical concepts around situated and historically contingent forms that materialize a polis in place. But we’re also interested in exploring the animacy and nonhuman force of forms into domains of humanistic and social scientific inquiry. Graduate students and faculty from all disciplines are encouraged to attend.
Friday, September 17 @ 1pm: Introductory Meeting
Readings (email seminar assistant for dropbox access):
- Jason W. Moore, “Amsterdam is Standing on Norway Part 2”. Journal of Agrarian Change 10.2 (April 2010).
- Elizabeth M. DeLoughrey, Introduction to Allegories of the Anthropocene. Durham, NC: Duke UP, 2019.
Friday, October 29
Masterclass (10-12) and Public Lecture 16:00-18:00) by Dr. Amanda Boetzkes
Friday, November 19th
Masterclass (10-12) and Public Lecture 16:00-18:00) by Dr. Daniel Barber
January – May TBD
rMA and PhD students are eligible to take this workshop for creditBA and MA students are welcome to attend workshops (not for credit)
- 1 EC for attendance to one session with a response paper (see below)
- 6 EC for attendance across one term with 2 response papers and a final research paper (see below)
Tasks / Assessment (6EC)
(1) reading compulsory readings and related literature pertaining to the topic at hand;
(2) writing a Reading Report for two of the meetings about the material read (2 x 20% = 40% of final grade); or one for 1 EC
(3) attending the sessions and engaging your views during discussions;
(4) writing a Final Paper on a chosen topic (60% of final grade) for 6 EC;
(5) present your preliminary findings prior to the final session (date/time tbc). Reading Reports
Each participant seeking 6 EC will complete two reading reports during the tutorial, which will be graded (2 x 20% = 40% of final grade). These reading reports should be between 1000 – 1200 words in length (not including references), and should be emailed to the course instructors 24 hours before the relevant seminar (i.e. usually this is before Thursday 17:00). Please remember include your name/student number and a bibliography at the end of the text. While we expect that most students will choose one of the readings for the reading report, we expect you to show your familiarity with the other required reading for that week (i.e. citing those texts in relation to your chosen text).
A reading report is a “mini-review”. So please also orient yourself towards book reviews – see, for example, the advice given in Wendy Belcher “Writing the Academic Book Review”.
In general, a reading response should answer (most or all of) the following questions:
- Who is the author? What is the subject matter of the book / article? What type of text is it (who is the intended audience)?
- What are the author’s motivations/reasons for writing this book/ article (as indicated by the author himself or apparent from context)?
- What is the structure of the book/article (how does the book present its argument)?
- What does the book/article achieve (what do we learn that we did not know / what does an informed audience of scholars learn that the scientific community did not know)?
- How is the book connected to the state of research on the topic (other important publications or public debates on the topic)?
- Is it well written (does the structure make sense? Is the argument convincing? Does the author achieve an economy of presentation i.e.: Is there an overload of information, or a scarcity of information, or does the author hit the right balance?)
- What did you personally find most interesting? Where do you agree with the author, where do you not agree? How can you apply the book/article to your own research? Did the book/article prompt you to think about the topic further – and if so, in which way?
The bulk of your response should be devoted to critically assessing the CONTENT of the chapter/article; information such as author’s biography, etc., should be clearly but BRIEFLY addressed. Additionally, do not make the bulk of your response your OPINION; rather, we would like to see evidence of your ability to critically and productively engage with the author’s posits, conclusions, or viewpoints.
Instructions for Final Paper
The final paper is a mini-paper on a self-chosen topic that should engage the themes and readings of the tutorial. The required length is 2500 – 3000 words and the deadline is Friday 17 January 2020 (before 17:00) for semester 1 credit, and May 28 (before 17:00) for semester 2 credit. Email final paper to both Drs. de Bloois and Diamanti in a single message. We will schedule an additional meeting so that each student participant has the chance to present their paper theme/concept and receive feedback.