Panel no. 17 - Nomadic Landscapes in Waiting: Exploring Forms of Engagement with a Changing Earth


Title Dr First name Ariell Last name Ahearn
Institution University of Oxford City Oxford Country GB


Title Dr First name Zahra Last name Hussain
Institution name Laajverd City Islamabad Country PK


Panel title

Nomadic Landscapes in Waiting: Exploring Forms of Engagement with a Changing Earth

Panel abstract

Places as diverse as the high Karakorum mountain passes of Pakistan and the steppes of Central Asia are experiencing and anticipating a changing earth. With climate change as an impending disaster, which becomes partially visible through the sluggish and uneven temporalities of rising temperatures, shifting land use and rising waters, how does one slow down research in a slowly unfolding field? We ask: how does one conduct an inquiry with an ongoing and up-coming disaster which is so intimately intertwined with other, more visible forms of extraction (mining projects, road networks) in landscapes especially lived in by nomadic peoples? Our changing earth is not characterized by one single crisis or rupture moment, but many concurrent and complex changes in social-ecological relationships. We invite case studies exploring these conditions across the world, preferably of nomadic peoples. In particular, this relates to work on "slow death" (Berlant, 2011), "slow violence" (Nixon, 2011) and "quasi events" (Povinelli, 2011) where there is no significant event to hang on to, but the ordinary, mundane and non-spectacular progression of degradation, dispossession and erasure as well as related processes of formation, connection and creation. We are interested in concepts of fragility, resilience and intractable conflict; of how spaces and practices are negotiated, and how life is held together (Ingold, 2017) across nomadic landscapes. We invite alternative forms of submissions (visual, textual, narrative, story-telling, moving image) that explore these non-spectacular stories of everyday engagements with a changing life/earth as they relate to nomadic and semi-nomadic landscapes.

IUAES Commission

IUAES Commission on Nomadic Peoples