Academic Hour: Reconstruction and Repetition: Experimental Ecologies and Concrete Sovereignty in Post 3.11 Japan

By Michael Fisch, Department of Anthropology, The University of Chicago.

2018.01.15 | Jon Bendixen

Date Wed 21 Feb
Time 13:00 15:00
Location Lecture Hall (4206-139), Moesgaard Campus

The talk considers two competing approaches to post 3.11 reconstruction in northeast Japan through the analytics of concrete sovereignty and experimental ecologies. The former, I argue, is elicited by the government led construction of massive concrete seawalls to mitigate the effects of anticipated future tsunami while the latter is expressed in alternative natural systems of disaster mitigation that are being advocated among local communities. Concrete sovereignty and experimental ecologies, I argue, call attention to two radically different paradigms of social organization and visions of the future. While concrete sovereignty encapsulates the unique relationship between concrete materiality and the program of self-governance that Japan has pursued in the postwar era, experimental ecologies denote emerging attempts to think beyond twentieth century models of disaster management and autonomy in order to formulate a sustainable notion of community that is regionally focused while globally oriented. 

CAS, Antropologi