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The Next Monsoon: Climate Change and Contemporary Cultural Production in South Asia

Sunday, October 29, 2023 at 10:00am to 3:00pm

Johnson Museum of Art
Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art, 114 Central Ave, Ithaca, NY 14853, USA

Three-day conference: Friday, October 27 to Sunday, October 29.

South Asia is an empirical microcosm of the ecological and epistemological upending caused by climate change. Forming a quarter of the world's population and inhabiting tremendous cultural and geographic diversity, South Asia provides a unique case study for examining the challenges of climate change on diverse cultural forms. Climate change has indelibly altered landscapes and people, from Bangladeshi river deltas to Nepali mountaintops to Pakistani deserts to Indian megalopolises to Maldivian islands.

This conference thus asks: How is climate change rendered in visual arts, cinema, literature, and architecture in South Asia? How do projects of cultural expression render visibility to place-based narratives in South Asia? A humanistic approach to climate change entails developing modes of attention to a world yet to come. Centering the human imagination in the scientized field of climate change engenders a view of environmental variation over time that highlights the flexibility, resilience, and persistence of human life and its relation to the nonhuman worlds. Such a perspective links meaning and materiality, ingenuity, imagination, literature and livelihoods, subsistence, and stories.

The full conference schedule is now available.

Supported by grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Central New York Humanities Corridor. Cosponsored by the Johnson Museum of Art and its Stoikov Asian Art Lecture Fund.

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