Of Asian Americanist Futures:
Anthropocenes, Ecological Humanisms, and Living and Dying for the Time Being
Monday, February 19th at 2 PM.
Plaza Building, Room M108
Light refreshments will be provided.
About the Lecture:
Scholars have become increasingly concerned with the future due to ecological predicaments of the Anthropocene, an epoch defined by the geological agency of humans and that has raised the prospect of human extinction. What might Asian American studies have to say about a time when Asians and Asian Americans are no longer alive? This talk positions Asian American studies as theory by reading Ruth Ozeki’s A Tale for the Time Being alongside contemporary ecological theory, the philosophies of Gilles Deleuze and Alfred North Whitehead, and critical biopolitical studies. The speculative tale unfolds between two characters who are separated by the Pacific Ocean but joined by a diary that has floated from Japan to the Pacific Northwest, perhaps as flotsam from the 2011 Tōhoku tsunami. Entangling the sociopolitical, the ontological, and the metaphysical, Ozeki imagines notions of ecology, time, and life that may expand an ethics of care in the Anthropocene beyond the human.
Chad Shomura is Assistant Professor of Political Science at the University of Colorado Denver. He researches and teaches at the intersection of political theory, feminist and queer theory, African American studies, Asian American Studies, and settler colonial and indigenous studies. He is currently working on two major research projects: the first, called The Bad Good Life, develops a notion of impasse to describe contemporary political life in the United States; the second explores reimaginations of the human, life, and time in the Anthropocene. Inspired by his feline companion ʻAe Kai, Chad settles for nothing less than a world that can hold us all.
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