ATTENTION: We'll be meeting at our new venue, Oak Street Cafe. Please check location and address details so that you don't go to the wrong spot!
Lecturer: Gregory Sotir
Teacher bio: http://peoplescolloquium.org/teacher-bios/
1: The definition of capitalist civilization as a cancerous growth is a reflection on the negative aspects of industrialization. Various religious factions used the ethic of the busy-ness of labor as a marker for devotion, especially the Calvinists who landed in Plymouth Rock 400 years ago. The railroads and decimation of the buffalo (and indigenous Native peoples), Henry Ford and the Manhattan Project are some historical markers, among many others, that allowed the contagion to spread.
The economic realities of the ‘Work is Freedom’ mindset led to dehumanization of the ‘lazy’ and created a new mindset tolerant of indentured servitude, regimentation, and often ended with cultural and physical genocide. The linkage from the former to the latter concept are the psychological foundations of the acceptance of pollution disasters, a voluntary self-mutilation, current resource extraction techniques, and technologic autism.
2: Deep Ecology arose from a transformation of non-violent direct action into a militant warrior ethos, mythologized by the corporate media as eco-terrorism. We can see this expanding today in deteriorating ‘polarization’ of political and cultural POVs. Speaking from personal experience, an attempt will be made to analyze the differences between Deep Ecology militancy and Non-violent direct action (NVDA.) Edward Abbey, monkey wrenching and Glen Canyon Dam will be contrasted with Judi Bari and coalition building. Controversies involving Derrick Jensen and Lierre Kieth will be briefly touched upon as a prelude to charting a newly emerging eco-Puritanism, arising from Deep Green Resistance and other radical environmental groups, that may be a harbinger of a complex polar shift in political ideology.
3: Lastly, as society becomes more polarized given the ecological realities of climate change, environmental refugees, and border/resource wars that are already developing as a political and an ecological dilemma, how do we, as thinkers and writers, artists and advocates, move forward with this understanding? Is this the true end-set of industrialism? How can we create visions for reading consumption that are not completely dystopic and yet maintain the impetus of prophetic message?