Klein College Lecture: Dr. Juan Francisco Salazar

In recent years, the Antarctic has become a fitting space for anthropological analysis and ethnographic research as human activities intensify and human populations increasingly make themselves at home in Antarctica. These processes demand a deepening of inquiry into what kinds of socialities, subjectivities, material cultures, affects, and cultural practices are emerging there. Antarctica shapes the future of the planet in unexpected ways. It is not only a unique laboratory for science, but an exceptional laboratory for thinking about futures on and off Earth. It is also the one of the most mediated places on Earth. Informed by video ethnographic work in the Antarctic Peninsula and the production of a series of environmental communication and media projects, including digital storytelling, the feature-length documentary film Nightfall on Gaia (2015), and an online game, this talk explores the role of communication and media practices in developing accounts of world-making processes through which extreme environments are made habitable.

Dr. Juan Francisco Salazar is an Associate Professor in the School of Humanities and Communication Arts, and Research Director of the Institute for Culture and Society (ICS) at Western Sydney University, Australia where he is also a Research Theme Champion (Environment & Sustainability). As an anthropologist, communication specialist and filmmaker, his academic and creative work is concerned with the coupled dynamics of socio-environmental change.

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