Multiple nature-cultures and diverse anthropologies (CLOSED) 
Atsuro Morita (Osaka University)
Casper Bruun Jensen
Start time:
16 May, 2014 at 15:30 (UTC+0)
Session slots:

Short Abstract:

The aim of this panel is to scrutinize the relation between multiple nature-cultures and diverse anthropological traditions. It creates space for reflecting on the entanglements of diverse modes of anthropological response and multiple nature-cultures, ecological, ontological or otherwise.

Long Abstract

Over the recent decades, nature has been one of the most hotly debated topics in anthropology. Whether focusing on human-animal relations and animism, on scientific and technological ways of remaking the world, or on ontology, nature, which used to be seen as the stable background for culture, has turned into an unstable foreground.

Pivotal to this change are diverse critiques of the Euro-American dichotomy between nature and culture. This adds poignancy to these discussions since anthropological analysis has itself largely relied on precisely this dichotomy. Accordingly, new explorations of nature-cultures are often related to reflexive efforts to "provincialize" Euro-American forms of anthropology. However, in the context of non-Western anthropologies, which have affinal relations with non-Western nature-cultures, the questions are even more complex. For example, while Japanese anthropology has a rich tradition for studying non-Western socio-ecologies it has also long been haunted by the (Western) nature-culture dichotomy. Yet, might it be the case that non-Western anthropologies offer different means for dealing with, redefining, or undoing, this dichotomy?

The aim of this panel is to scrutinize the interrelated problems of the possible existence of multiple nature-cultures and the definite existence of diverse anthropological traditions. The panel offers an occasion to explore the implications and opportunities of this uneasy relation, which increasingly seems shared across anthropological traditions, non-Western and Euro-American. Hence, the panel aims to create space for reflecting on the entanglements of diverse modes of anthropological analysis and engagement and multiple nature-cultures, ontological or otherwise.

Accepted papers: