Accepted paper:

On hybrid human-animal connections and spatial disruptions. The example of the Central Saharan Addax


Tilman Musch (University of Bayreuth)

Paper short abstract:

"Nature" in the Anthropocene is conceived as places interlinked with the human. When conceptualizing this "intermingledness", we often use the term of "hybrid spaces". But isn't this rather an anthropocentric view? What if one conceptualized it rather in terms of disruptions?

Paper long abstract:

Environment, in the Anthropocene, becomes more and more coined by the human footprint. What we call "nature" is now conceived as places closely interlinked with the human and even dependent of the latter. In order to conceptualize such a relationship of dependency and "intermingledness", scholars use the term of "hybrid spaces". These spaces allow, in our common understanding, for example wildlife and men to coexist. But isn't this a rather anthropocentric view? What if one conceived such connectivity of human and animal spaces in terms of disruptions? We will try to leave for a while the field of humanities and depict the Addax' point of view. Addax nasomaculatus is a highly endangered ungulate species living in the Central Sahara. Now, the last individuals (about 300?), are found in eastern Niger. The species retires deliberately in hostile desert areas if disturbed by men. Commercial routes and mining activities reportedly narrowed over the last decades and years the transhumance areas of the antelope. What we call connected spaces may thus be, under the Addax point of view, seen as disruptions. What new concepts of space could we thus expect if we replaced in our academic discussions the term "hybridity" by disruptiveness?

panel Anth01
Multiple African anthropocenes: universal concepts, local manifestations