Race and Climate Reading Group - March 2023
Friday, March 10, 2023, 1 - 3pm
Add to Calendar
Launched in the Spring of 2020, the Race and Climate Reading group was created in response to Cooper Union student requests to invest in discussions that center issues of race and social justice and how they intersect with the climate crisis that we are all deeply mired in at the moment. As we all know, the climate crisis effects communities of color first, and disproportionately. And, as the readings all attest, this is reflective of and a culmination of centuries of oppression, and settler colonialism. The concept of the group:
- We read about the intersection of race and climate across multiple genres
- We privilege writers and thinkers of color
Friday, March 10th, 1 – 3 pm - In the Shadow of the Palms by Sophie Chao
With In the Shadow of the Palms, Sophie Chao examines the multispecies entanglements of oil palm plantations in West Papua, Indonesia, showing how Indigenous Marind communities understand and navigate the social, political, and environmental demands of the oil palm plant. As Chao notes, it is no secret that the palm oil sector has destructive environmental impacts: it greatly contributes to tropical deforestation and is a major driver of global warming. Situating the plant and the transformations it has brought within the context of West Papua’s volatile history of colonization, ethnic domination, and capitalist incursion, Chao traces how Marind attribute environmental destruction not just to humans, technologies, and capitalism but also to the volition and actions of the oil palm plant itself. By approaching cash crops as both drivers of destruction and subjects of human exploitation, Chao rethinks capitalist violence as a multispecies act. In the process, Chao centers how Marind fashion their own changing worlds and foreground Indigenous creativity and decolonial approaches to anthropology.
Duke University Press Scholars of Color First Book Award recipient.
For questions, and for the texts, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Located at 7 East 7th Street, between Third and Fourth Avenues