An Ecotopian Lexicon

2019

Matthew Schneider-Mayerson and Brent Ryan Bellamy, Editors
Foreword by Kim Stanley Robinson

An Ecotopian Lexicon

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Presents thirty novel terms that do not yet exist in English to envision ways of responding to the environmental challenges of our generation

Proceeding from the notion that dominant Western cultures lack the terms and concepts to describe or respond to our environmental crisis, this collaborative volume of short, engaging essays offers ecologically productive terms to inspire responses to fossil-fueled neoliberal capitalism. Each of the thirty suggested “loanwords” helps us imagine how to adapt and even flourish in the face of socioecological adversity. 

 

"Part dream, part provocation ... (with) a wonky yet infectious hopefulness."
The New Yorker

As the scale and gravity of climate change becomes undeniable, a cultural revolution must ultimately match progress in the realms of policy, infrastructure, and technology. Proceeding from the notion that dominant Western cultures lack the terms and concepts to describe or respond to our environmental crisis, An Ecotopian Lexicon is a collaborative volume of short, engaging essays that offer ecologically productive terms—drawn from other languages, science fiction, and subcultures of resistance—to envision and inspire responses and alternatives to fossil-fueled neoliberal capitalism.



Each of the thirty suggested “loanwords” helps us imagine how to adapt and even flourish in the face of the socioecological adversity that characterizes the present moment and the future that awaits. From “Apocalypso” to “Qi,” “ ~*~ “ to “Total Liberation,” thirty authors from a range of disciplines and backgrounds assemble a grounded yet dizzying lexicon, expanding the limited European and North American conceptual lexicon that many activists, educators, scholars, students, and citizens have inherited. Fourteen artists from eleven countries respond to these chapters with original artwork that illustrates the contours of the possible better worlds and worldviews.



Contributors: Sofia Ahlberg, Uppsala U; Randall Amster, Georgetown U; Cherice Bock, Antioch U; Charis Boke, Cornell U; Natasha Bowdoin, Rice U; Kira Bre Clingen, Harvard U; Caledonia Curry (SWOON); Lori Damiano, Pacific Northwest College of Art; Nicolás De Jesús; Jonathan Dyck; John Esposito, Chukyo U; Rebecca Evans, Winston-Salem State U; Allison Ford, U of Oregon; Carolyn Fornoff, U of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; Michelle Kuen Suet Fung; Andrew Hageman, Luther College; Michael Horka, George Washington U; Yellena James; Andrew Alan Johnson, Princeton U; Jennifer Lee Johnson, Purdue U; Melody Jue, U of California, Santa Barbara; Jenny Kendler; Daehyun Kim (Moonassi); Yifei Li, NYU Shanghai; Nikki Lindt; Anthony Lioi, Juilliard School of New York; Maryanto; Janet Tamalik McGrath; Pierre-Héli Monot, Ludwig Maximilian U of Munich; Kari Marie Norgaard, U of Oregon; Karen O’Brien, U of Oslo, Norway; Evelyn O’Malley, U of Exeter; Robert Savino Oventile, Pasadena City College; Chris Pak; David N. Pellow, U of California, Santa Barbara; Andrew Pendakis, Brock U; Kimberly Skye Richards, U of California, Berkeley; Ann Kristin Schorre, U of Oslo, Norway; Malcolm Sen, U of Massachusetts Amherst; Kate Shaw; Sam Solnick, U of Liverpool; Rirkrit Tiravanija, Columbia U; Miriam Tola, Northeastern U; Sheena Wilson, U of Alberta; Daniel Worden, Rochester Institute of Technology.
An Ecotopian Lexicon

Matthew Schneider-Mayerson is assistant professor of environmental studies at Yale–NUS College and author of Peak Oil: Apocalyptic Environmentalism and Libertarian Political Culture.

Brent Ryan Bellamy studies and teaches science fiction, American literature and cultures, and energy humanities and is coeditor of Materialism and the Critique of Energy.

Kim Stanley Robinson is the author of nineteen science fiction novels, including the Mars trilogy.

An Ecotopian Lexicon

Part dream, part provocation ... (with) a wonky yet infectious hopefulness.

The New Yorker

We understand that an era is ending, but we do not know what will happen after it. Maybe changing words from 70 thousand years ago helps us cope with reality.

Vogue Poland

A fascinating collection of non-English or newly invented words that impart something of the complexities of everyday life in an era of warming skies and oceans, mass degradation, precarity, and insecurity, each of which also helps map a possible future.

Science Magazine

An Ecotopian Lexicon


Contents


Foreword


Kim Stanley Robinson


Acknowledgments


Introduction: Loanwords to Live With


Brent Ryan Bellamy and Matthew Schneider-Mayerson


~*~


Melody Jue


Apocalypso


Sam Solnick


Blockadia


Randall Amster


Cibopathic


Daniel Worden


Dàtóng


Andrew Pendakis


Fotminne


Sofia Ahlberg


Ghurba


Allison Ford and Kari Marie Norgaard


Godhuli


Malcolm Sen


Gyebale


Jennifer L. Johnson


Heyiya


Michael Horka


Hyperempathy


Rebecca Evans


Ildsjel


Karen O’Brien and Ann Kristin Schorre


In Lak’ech—a la K’in


John Esposito


Metahumanism


Anthony Lioi


Misneach


Evelyn O’Malley


Portfolio


Nicolás de Jesús


Rirkrit Tiravanija


Swoon


Jonathan Dyck


Jenny Kendler


Lori Damiano


Michelle Fung


Yellena James


Natasha Bowdoin


Moonassi


Nikki Lindt


Kate Shaw


Susa Monteiro


Maryanto


Nahual


Carolyn Fornoff


Nakaiy


Kira Bre Clingen


Pa Theuan


Andrew Alan Johnson


Pachamama


Miriam Tola


Plant Time


Charis Boke


Qi


Yifei Li


Rén


Pierre Monot


Sehnsucht


Andrew Hageman


Shikata Ga Nai


Brent Ryan Bellamy and Sheena Wilson


Sila


Janet Tamalik McGrath


Solastalgia


Kimberly Skye Richards


Sueño


Robert Savino Oventile


Terragouge


Christopher Pak


Total Libertion


David Pellow


Watershed Discipleship


Cherice Bock


Contributors



Another Path


Greetings


Gyebale


Jennifer Lee Johnson


In Lak’ech—a la K’in


John Esposito


Resistance


Blockadia


Randall Amster


Ildsjel


Karen O’Brien and Ann Kristin Schorre


Metahumanism


Anthony Lioi


Terragouge


Chris Pak


Total Liberation


David N. Pellow


Dispositions


Apocalypso


Sam Solnick


Misneach


Evelyn O'Malley


Rén


Pierre Monot


Hyperempathy


Rebecca Evans


Shikata ga nai


Brent Ryan Bellamy and Sheena Wilson


Perception


Cibopathic


Daniel Worden


Godhuli


Malcolm Sen


Nakaiy


Kira Bre Clingen


Plant Time


Charis Boke


Desires


Sehnsucht


Andrew Hageman


Ghurba


Kari Norgaard and Allison Ford


Solastalgia


Kimberly Richards


Dàtóng


Andrew Pendakis


Sueño


Robert Savino Oventile


Beyond the Human


Nahual


Carolyn Fornoff


~*~


Melody Jue


Heyiya


Michael Horka


Fotminne


Sofia Ahlberg


Watershed Discipleship


Cherice Bock


Beyond “the Environment”


Qi


Yifei Li


Pa Theuan


Andrew Johnson


Pachamama


Miriam Tola


Sila


Tamalik McGrath