CALL FOR PAPERS – Changing Nature: Migrations, Energies, Limits (ASLE)

The Association for the Study of Literature and Environment (ASLE)
Tenth Biennial Conference,
May 28-June 1, 2013
University of Kansas, Lawrence

The Association for the Study of Literature and Environment (ASLE) invites proposals for its Tenth Biennial Conference, to be held May 28th through June 1st, 2013, at the University of Kansas in Lawrence. The decennial conference theme is intended to reflect some of the most engaging current conversations within the environmental humanities and across disciplines, and to link those discussions to the transnational nexus of energy, labor, borders, and human and nonhuman environments that are so fundamentally “changing nature,” and with it the widely varied kinds of environmental critique we practice, art we make, and politics we advocate. Migrations–of humans, of non-human creatures, of “invasive species,” of industrial toxins across aquifers and cellular membranes, of disease across species and nations, of transgenic pollen and GM fish-have changed the meanings of place, bodies, nations, and have lent new urgency to the old adage that “everything is connected to everything.” Energies–fossil, renewable, human, spiritual, aesthetic, organic-radically empower our species for good and for ill, and make our individual and collective choices into the Anthropocene. And those choices are profoundly about Limits on resources, climate, soil, and water; about voluntary and involuntary curbs on individual and collective consumption and waste; about the often porous and often violently marked borders of empire, class, race, and gender.

We seek proposals for papers, panels, roundtables, workshops, and other public presentations that address the intersections between representation, nature, and culture, and that are connected to the conference’s deliberately broad and, we hope, provocative theme. As always, we emphatically welcome interdisciplinary approaches; readings of environmentally inflected fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, and film; and proposals from outside the academic humanities, including submissions from artists, writers, practitioners, activists, and colleagues in the social and natural sciences. An incomplete list of possible topics might include, combine, and are certainly not limited to:

  • Petro-culture and the Energies of Modernity: the Keystone pipeline, hydrofracking, tar sands, global capital and resource wars, the possibility of change
  • Aesthetics and the Futures of Environmental Representation
  • Climate Change: mitigation, adaptation, costs, and the concept of place
  • Empire, Race and Environment: postcolonial ecocriticism
  • The Futures of Ecofeminism
  • Indigenous Environmentalisms
  • “Natural” Histories of Race, Ethnicity, Gender, Class, Sexualities…
  • Ecocomposition, environmentalism and rhetoric, sustainable pedagogies/the pedagogies of sustainability
  • Environmental Justice: toxins, food, climate, sovereignty
  • Postnatural Nature, Posthuman Humanism
  • Digital Representation and Natural Experience
  • Biotechnology: prostheses, genetic modification, synthetic life
  • Waste: from adopt-a-highway to the pacific garbage patch
  • Animals, Animality: us and us
  • Evolution, Epigenetic Change, Politics
  • Affect and Environmentalism: love, despair, postdespair

(More speakers TBA)

Stacy Alaimo, Distinguished Teaching Professor in English, University of Texas at Arlington. Author of Undomesticated Ground: Recasting Nature as Feminist Space and Bodily Natures: Science, Environment, and the Material Self.

Maxine Burkett, Associate Professor of Law at the William S. Richardson School of Law, University of Hawai’i and inaugural Director of the Center for Island Climate Adaptation and Policy (ICAP), at the University of Hawai’i Sea Grant College Program.

Juan Carlos Galeano, Spanish Poetry and Amazonian Studies, Florida State University. Author of Amazonia and Folktales of the Amazon.

Wes Jackson, resident of the Land Institute. Author of
Nature as Measure (2011) and Consulting the Genius of the Place (2010).

Rob Nixon, Rachel Carson Professor of English, University of Wisconsin-Madison. Author of Slow Violence and the Environmentalism of the Poor and Dreambirds: The Natural History of a Fantasy.

Jeffrey Thomson, Poetry and Nonfiction, University of Maine Farmington. Author of Birdwatching in Wartime and Renovation.

Daniel Wildcat, American Indian Studies, Haskell Indian Nations University. Co-director of the Haskell Environmental Research Studies Center and author of Red Alert! Saving the Planet with Indigenous Knowledge and (with Vine Deloria, Jr.) Power and Place: Indian Education in America.

Cary Wolfe, Bruce and Elizabeth Dunlevie Professor of English, Rice University. Author of Animal Rites: American Culture, The Discourse of Species, and Posthumanist Theory and What Is Posthumanism?

Donald Worster, Joyce and Elizabeth Hall Professor of U.S. History, University of Kansas. Author of Nature’s Economy: A History of Ecological Ideas, Dust Bowl: the Southern Plains in the 1930s, and A Passion for Nature: The Life of John Muir.


As we have in the past, we will hold a number of pre-conference workshops on Tuesday, May 28, 2013, on central and emerging topics that reflect the diversity of our approaches and our membership. Rather than choose conference leaders in advance, however, we are calling for proposals for workshops and will post what seem the most compelling set of panels before the conference registration opens. Preconference workshop leaders will receive free registration for the 2013 conference and a complementary year’s membership in ASLE. For more information or to submit a proposal to lead a preconference workshop, please email Greta Gaard, ASLE’s 2013 Preconference Workshop Coordinator ( Proposals should include (a) a 500 word (max) proposal outlining the proposed workshop theme, structure, and your particular qualifications and (b) your vita. Pre-­conference workshop proposals must be sent by October 30, 2012.

We will also be offering half-day field excursions one afternoon that will allow attendees to experience some of the extraordinary natural beauty and fascinating history of the area, including a visit to the Konza Prairie Biological Station; a tour of the Wakarusa Wetlands, Haskell Indian Nations University Campus and Medicine Wheel; a trip to the KU Environmental Studies Field Station and Native Medicinal Plant Research Garden; mountain biking along the Kansas River; and an organic farm tour. For more information, please contact the conference site host, Byron Caminero‐Santangelo (

Finally, as announced on the diversity caucus blog and in the newsletter, the conference will make a block of time and a number of rooms available during the conference to facilitate the formation of interest group caucuses within ASLE, based around critical perspective, identity, language, region, nation, or whatever other organizing principle the group chooses. The only requirement for these groups is that they are open to all members; our hope is that the caucuses will encourage richer conversation within ASLE and will facilitate better communication between the membership and the leadership about how ASLE might strengthen its longstanding commitments to diversity. For more information on the caucuses and to request meeting space in advance, please contact ASLE diversity coordinator Salma Monani at


Stretching out on its own unbounded cale, unconfined…Combining the real and the ideal, and beautiful as dreams.”
–Walt Whitman on the view from the campus of The University of Kansas

Located in the forested hills surrounding the Kansas River, Lawrence offers the charms of a small city on the edge of the prairie with the resources of Kansas City (and its major airport) a short drive to the east.  As home to both the University of Kansas and Haskell Indian Nations University, Lawrence is frequently cited as one of the United States’ best college towns, and was recently ranked by the National Trust for Historic Preservation as one of its “Dozen Most Distinctive Destinations.” The lovely KU campus sits atop Mount Oread and is a short walk, bike, or bus ride from Lawrence’s vibrant downtown, as well as the river and a number of area parks. At the center of downtown is very pedestrian-friendly Massachusetts Street, offering two miles of local shops, galleries, independent bookstores, coffeehouses, bars and live music venues, as well as a burgeoning foodie and locavore culture spearheaded by a range of downtown restaurants. For those seeking outdoor activities, the town offers extensive cycling and walking trails through town and along the Kansas River; hiking, camping, and boating at Clinton Lake and Perry Lake (each about a fifteen–‐minute drive from campus); and walking trails through the Wakarusa wetlands.

Conference housing will be provided in the university’s dormitories and in three local hotels. Dormitory housing, all conference events, and one hotel are all within a five minute walk of each other through campus. Two Conference hotels are in the center of downtown, about ten blocks from campus; regular shuttle service will be provided for those who would prefer that option. Wireless Service will be available for all conference registrants, and all rooms for concurrent sessions will be equipped with projectors and Internet access. In addition, to reduce our resource use, we will make all conference materials, including maps and the program, available online and through a smartphone app; paper materials will also be readily available at registration upon request.


For additional information and to submit a proposal for a pre-formed panel or individual paper, please visit the conference website:

  • One proposal submission allowed per person.
  • Participants can present on only one panel/paper jam/or roundtable (though serving as a chair on a panel, in addition to presenting, is permitted.)
  • Pre-formed panels are highly encouraged. To encourage institutional diversity and connection, all pre-formed panels must include participants from more than one institution and from more than one academic level.
  • Proposals must be submitted online (though if this poses a significant difficulty for an individual member, please email Paul Outka to work out an accommodation.)

All proposals must be submitted by November 15, 2012. We will evaluate your proposal carefully, and notify you of its final status by January 31, 2013.

For questions about the program, please contact 2013 ASLE President Paul Outka, at For questions about the conference site and field sessions, please contact the Conference Site Host, Byron Caminero‐Santangelo, at

CALL FOR PAPERS – Conference on Nature/Society

The University of Kentucky Political Ecology Working Group invites you to participate in the third annual

February 28 – March 3, 2013
University of Kentucky
Lexington, Kentucky, USA

Featured Speakers:
Dr. Ariel Salleh (Department of Political Economy, University of Sydney) and
Dr. Arun Agrawal (School of Natural Resources and Environment, University of Michigan)

This conference provides an opportunity to critically examine perspectives on human-environment relationships and to foster interdisciplinary discussions among a diverse group of scholars. Participants will have the opportunity to collaborate with and receive feedback from cutting edge researchers through sharing their work in an intimate setting.

We encourage submissions from all individuals who are engaged in research on the ecological dimensions of political, economic, social, and scientific research regardless of their topical, theoretical, or methodological frameworks, including but not limited to:

  • Environmental justice
  • Ecological modernization
  • Environmental history
  • Science and technology studies
  • Global urbanization
  • Environmental law
  • Restoration ecology
  • Political economy of nature
  • Genetic technology
  • Commons, enclosures, and land tenure
  • Environmental risk
  • Resource management and conservation
  • Non-equilibrium ecology
  • Scholar/activist relationships
  • Critical physical geography
  • Landscape studies
  • Infrastructure
  • Environmental discourse and policy
  • Feminist political ecology
  • Sustainability
  • Urban political ecology
  • Cultural ecology
  • Environmental sociology
  • Food security and sustainable agriculture
  • Knowledge production
  • Environmental Governance

Conference Highlights:

Paper sessions: These will include 3 or 4 presenters with a discussant or 5 presenters without a discussant (each presenter will generally have 15 to 20 minutes to present with time for discussion). We are especially interested in accepting organized sessions. Please contact us if you are interested in organizing a session, but session organizers are also encouraged to circulate their own CFPs.

Panel on Scholar / Activist Collaboration: As part of an effort to build connections between scholars and activists, we will be sponsoring a panel dedicated to fostering collaborative research projects between researchers and activists.

Undergraduate Student Symposium: This symposium provides undergraduate students with a forum to present their work, receive useful feedback, and connect with graduate students and faculty with similar research foci.

Undergraduate and Graduate Student Paper Competitions: UKPEWG is excited to announce we will be sponsoring two paper competitions. Please look for additional information to be emailed and posted on our website for application instructions for each competition.

Field Trips: These trips will focus on contemporary issues related to political ecology in the greater Kentucky bluegrass region. Past field trips have included trips to mountaintop removal sites in the region, meetings with seed saving organizations, and trips to local farms.

Submission of Abstracts and Registration

Abstracts or proposals should be 200 – 300 words in length and include three to five keywords. Please include: your name, any titles or affiliations you would like listed in the program, and an email address (please specify if you do not want your email included in the program). All presenters must register online for the conference and pay the sliding registration fee.

Please visit beginning November 1, 2012 to register. The deadline for abstract submissions is December 1, 2012.

As we move closer to the conference date, more information on travel arrangements, field trips, and an updated list of speakers will be posted on the conference website:

Please email any questions to

DEADLINE TOMORROW – 9th Meeting on Environmental Philosophy, June 12-15, 2012

International Society for Environmental Ethics cordially invites you to the 9th Annual Meeting on Environmental Philosophy in Allenspark, Colorado, USA, June 12-15, 2012.

The registration deadline is tomorrow, May 18th, 2012.
Please visit the conference main page

PODCAST SERIES – Generation Anthropocene

Generation Anthropocene, a weekly podcast from Stanford University, provides interviews about the Anthropocene from social, scientific, economic, and moral perspectives.  As environmental philosophers have long talked about moral and philosophical issues surrounding the increasing humanization of the globe, ISEE hopes the folks at Stanford will soon invite an environmental philosopher to weigh in on the issues.

The following podcasts are now available.

Introduction to Series
We highly recommend you have a listen to our compilation piece to get acquainted with our contributors and the wide range of topics covered in the more intimate one-on-one interviews.


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Richard White (environmental historian): Richard White addresses the (mis)perceptions of the natural world, the ambiguities surrounding the Anthropocene boundary, and his approach to environmental history.


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Terry Root (biologist): Terry Root talks about her approach to bio-diversity loss, earth science communication, and the far-reaching impacts of humankind in our most emotional interview to date.


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Jon Payne (paleobiologist/geologist): Jon Payne discusses Earth’s previous mass extinctions including his work on the largest extinction in Earth’s history, how geologists define boundaries, our current understanding of deep time, and how geologists view the Anthropocene debate.


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Christopher Gardner (nutritionist): Christopher Gardner discusses the relations of food and society, the modern food movement, and a variety of compelling reasons for rethinking the way we eat in one of our more uplifting conversations.


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Bill Durham (human ecologist): Bill Durham discusses his career trajectory including his work in the Galapagos Islands, issues surrounding the new field of eco-tourism, and how a mishap with a lawn mower started his life’s work.


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Jon Christensen (environmental historian): Jon Christensen discusses the mythos of the American frontier and some of his unique approaches to history.  Christensen also gazes to the future and makes an interesting case for a placement of the Anthropocene boundary.


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Rodolfo Dirzo (tropical evolutionary biologist): Rodolfo Dirzo discusses the importance of biological diversity, his connection to the Anthropocene, and his work in Central and South America in one of our most spirited conversations.


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Doug Bird (anthropologist): Doug Bird discusses his work with the native Martu peoples of Australia, their perceptions of environment, the history of landscape modification in the remote and harsh Western dessert, and how the spread of homo sapiens relates to the Anthropocene.


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Sally Benson (director GCEP): Sally Benson talks about the goals and recent accomplishments of Stanford’s Global Climate and Energy Project (GCEP), the need to partner with industry, the hopeful signs of alternative energy development, and how her upbringing informed her sense of justice and optimism.


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Gil Masters (environmental engineer): Gil Masters highlights the importance of buildings in shaping our energy demands and explores the potential of energy efficiency while offering fresh and practical solutions to the energy and climate crisis.


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Patrick Archie (agricultural ecologist): Patrick Archie reflects on the social justice of food, the evolution of his profession, and his vision for community development as it relates to food systems.


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Leonard Ortolano (environmental engineer): Leonard Ortolano reflects on his professional trajectory and how environmentalism has guided water resource planning, gives us a brief history of US environmental assessment work, and explores the complexity of water as it relates to climate change.

WEBSITE – Ethics of Geoengineering Online Resource Center

The Mansfield Center for Ethics and Public Affairs at the University of Montana (with support from the National Science Foundation) is pleased to announce the launch of the Ethics of Geoengineering Online Resource Center.

We have attempted to make this an exhaustive resource for materials, organizations, and events related to geoengineering and ethics.  We will continue to work to make the site increasingly comprehensive, accessible, and engaging.  We welcome feedback and suggestions about significant resources that are not yet included.  Please bring to our attention any papers, events, and other media you think may be missing.

Visit the site at:

VIDEOCASTS – Ethics of Geoengineering, Solar Radiation Management

A team of University of Montana researchers has been awarded a two-year National Science Foundation grant to study the ethics of solar radiation management (SRM), the intentional engineering of the earth’s climate to offset climate change.  The project brings social science research together with ethical analysis to examine the views of stakeholders from politically powerful and marginalized populations on the moral challenges associated with deliberately engineering the climate.  As part of their work, the research team and the Program on Ethics and Public Affairs hosted a three-day workshop in October of 2010 at the University of Montana. 

During breaks between sessions short interviews with a number of our speakers were conducted. Interviewees were asked to comment on the ethics of solar radiation management based on the following prompts:

–Under what conditions could you imagine proceeding with field testing and eventual deployment of SRM?

What are the most challenging ethical issues that SRM presents?

What steps should be taken immediately to address these challenges?


  • Jason Blackstock, Center for International Governance Innovation
  • Ben Hale, Philosophy and Environmental Studies, University of Colorado, Boulder
  • Nicole Hassoun, Department of Philosophy, Carnegie Mellon University
  • David Keith, Director, ISEEE Energy and Environmental Systems Group, Departments of Chemical and Petroleum Enginering and Economics, University of Calgary
  • Andrew Light, Center for American Progress and Philosophy, George Mason University
  • Jane Long, Co-chair, Task Force on Geoengineering and Climate Change (NCEP) and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory
  • Clark Miller, School of Politics and Global Studies and Associate Directory, School of Science, Policy and Outcomes, Arizona State University
  • Wendy Parker, Department of Philosophy, Ohio University
  • Phil Rasch, Laboratory Fellow, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
  • Alan Robock, Department of Environmental Sciences, Rutgers University
  • Petra Tschakert, Department of Geography, Pennsylvannia State University
  • Nancy Tuana, Director, Rock Ethics Institute, Pennsylvannia State University
  • Kyle Whyte, Department of Philosophy and American Indian Studies, Michigan State University