Climate Lens Playbook

CLIMATE LENS PLAYBOOK (LINK)

  1. Practice literalism. End the tradition of turning everything into a symbol for human life.
  2. Occupy science. Befriend facts and factoids. Enrich theatre with the bristly nomenclatures of the natural sciences.
  3. Yes to vastness, and yes also to the infinitesimal. Toggle between the Big Picture and Reality-at-Hand, however tiny. Also between Deep History and the Here and Now. Do the Scalar Slide.
  4. Practice Glocality: intense focus on our localities, but with global eyes in the back our heads, scanning for interrelatedness and beaming signals out to other localities–consciously, urgently.
  5. Loosen your epistemologies. Don’t believe everything you think.
  6. Flatten your ontologies. Everyone and everything invited in.
  7. Unflatten your geographies. What happens here doesn’t stay here. The Far Away folds right onto the Right Here. Make plays with pleated places.
  8. Take all animals seriously, not just human ones. Also plants, including weeds, nettles, hemlock. . . Also minerals, rocks, currents of all kinds, clouds, winds, and other atmospheric forces. Also bacteria. Especially bacteria.
  9. Disaggregate the human. Who drives the carbon economy? Who profits? Who suffers?
  10. Don’t worry about working up empathy. Sympathy’s all you need. Feeling for others is just as powerful—and less anthropocentric?—than feeling with others.
  11. De-Sentimentalize “Nature.” Keep the awe, lose the “Awww!!!” Forge new affective pathways to the non-human, beyond sadness, guilt, and fear. Invite in humor, anger, joy, irony, sarcasm . . .
  12. Stand alongside our fellow species like a breathing exercise, to open up space in our cells for epistemologies of the biosphere that our bodies currently don’t hold, or ones we need to re-ignite. Physicalize awe.  
  13. Congregate, coalesce, flock, swarm, meet and greet. But also: disperse, disseminate, distribute, scatter and spread.
  14. Biology over psychology, geology over sociology, creaturely life over life style.
  15. Invent plans as well as plots, tell times as well as stories, write worlds as well as plays.
  16. Create theatres of species life; fill the stage with the Earth.

By Una Chaudhuri, with members of CLIMATE LENS:
36.5 / A Durational Performance with the Sea
The Arctic Cycle
Artists & Climate Change
Boom Arts
Dear Climate, New York University
Fundarte / Climakaze
H.E.A.T. Collective
Lab for Global Performance & Politics, Georgetown University
PearlDamour
Superhero Clubhouse
Theatre Without Borders
This is Not a Theatre Company, New York University
Una Chaudhuri, New York University
Works on Water

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