Dumpster/Fire: Traces of Burning Man

With guiding principles like self-reliance and self-expression, and a focus on an inclusive community of free exchange (decommodified gift economy), the event and culture of Burning Man is a great example of the phenomenon referred to as “contemporary spirituality.” Much of my research is concerned with relationships between religious communities/traditions and the ecological systems withContinue reading “Dumpster/Fire: Traces of Burning Man”

Varieties of Climate Denial

Extreme weather events have been happening since there has been weather. The current frequency and intensity of those events clearly corresponds to the symptoms of anthropogenic climate change. For skepticism, we can never really know with a hundred percent certainty precisely what causal factors are at work. That applies to all things, not just complicatedContinue reading “Varieties of Climate Denial”

Energy without Conscience

In Energy without Conscience: Oil, Climate Change, and Complicity (Duke University Press, 2017), David McDermott Hughes draws on his ethnographic work in Trinidad and Tobago to analyze the disregard, apathy, numbness with which most people interact with climate change. He highlights the banality of the complicities that connect people with energy, specifically with hydrocarbons (asContinue reading “Energy without Conscience”

Obama, VMAs, Macbeth, and Nothing

What an amazing evening… the 2012 MTV Video Music Awards, and at the same time, Barack Obama giving a speech accepting his nomination for president by the democratic party.  If those two events don’t inspire you, I can’t imagine what would.  I was not happy to hear Obama say that “climate change is not aContinue reading “Obama, VMAs, Macbeth, and Nothing”

Climate Change News: Doubters Debunked, Politicians Retreating

The Heartland Institute is a free-market think-tank, and one of its biggest projects is undermining climate science.  When IPCC climate scientists had emails stolen in the Climategate incident of 2009, Heartland expressed joy, saying something about how the release of those stolen documents should make people who believe in climate change reconsider (indeed, abandon) theirContinue reading “Climate Change News: Doubters Debunked, Politicians Retreating”

Climate Change in Michigan: Buckeyes are Coming!

How do you get people in Michigan to care about climate change?  Let them know that the Buckeyes are coming. The USDA has updated their Plant Hardlines Zone Map for the first time in over a decade.  It’s the map that indicates what plants can grow in which regions of the country.  Ann Arbor hasContinue reading “Climate Change in Michigan: Buckeyes are Coming!”