RCEH public lectures and research seminars
Our public lectures feature a range of speakers from Bath Spa University and other organisations. They are free to attend and include light refreshments to follow. Please visit the links for full information and to book your place.
2022-23 public lectures
- 26 October 2022: Drivers and trajectories of vulnerability to drought in Mozambique, 1500-present - Dr Matthew Hannaford (University of Lincoln). Organised by the Hazard, Risk and Disaster (HRD) Research Group.
- 18 January 2023: Climate Action in Higher Education: Beyond Hope and Fear - Dr Jo Lindsay Walton (Sussex Humanities Lab)
- 25 April 2023: Sounding the Quintessential - Nandita Kumar (DAAD artist-in-residence, Berlin)
- 5 May 2023: Plants, People and Power, an afternoon of talks and conversation focused on the politics and pleasure of plants.
- 28 June: Limits of Knowability, Dr Joshua Wodak (Western Sydney University)
Past public lectures
- 13 January: Ecocritical Perspectives on Contemporary Georgic Literature - Professor Terry Gifford (Bath Spa University). Online event, 6.00pm-7.30pm
- 17 February: In Conversation with Tjawangwa Dema. Online event, 6.00pm-6.45pm
- 17 March: Bordering, Outsiding and Other(world)ing in the Anthropocene - Dr Gaia Giuliani (University of Coimbra, Portugal). Co-hosted with Hazards, Risks and Disaster Research Group. Online event, 3.00pm-5.00pm
- 17 March: Survey, Seed and Monitor: From Seed-Bombing to Remote Sensing - Professor Jussi Parikka (University of Southampton, UK, and Academy of Performing Arts, Prague). Online event, 5.30pm-6.30pm
- 21 April: In Conversation with Zakiya Mckenzie (University of Exeter, Caribbean Literary Heritage Project, and former Ujima Radio Green and Black Ambassador and Forestry England Writer in Residence 2019). Online event, 6.00pm-7.00pm.
- 5 May: Mimesis as a Practice of Becoming-with - British-Finnish artist, composer and performer Hanna Tuulikki explores mimesis as a practice of becoming-with on a damaged planet. Online event, 6.00pm-7.00pm.
- 27 October: Political stability after disasters: Lessons from earthquake management in colonial South Asia - Dr Dan Haines, (University of Bristol). Co-hosted with Hazards, Risks and Disaster Research Group. Online event, 3:00pm-5:00pm.
- 3 November: Two talks on the role of art and education in environmental action in India – 'Compound Tera - Plastic Ka Mela', Sharmila Samant and Ben Parry, (Compound 13); 'Jol-a-Bhumir Golpo O Katha - Stories of the Wetland', Nobina Gupta and Saptarshi Mitra, (Disappearing Dialogues). Co-hosted with eARTh: Art, Education, Environment. Online event, 2.00pm-4.00pm.
- 24 November: Giving the Ocean its Voice: The Changing Song of the Humpbacked Whale - Alex South, (Royal Conservatoire of Scotland and University of St Andrews). Co-hosted with the Intercultural Communication through Practice Research Group. Online event, 6:00pm-7:30pm.
- 8 December: Political Grounds: Geographies of Soil and Earth in the Japanese Empire and the Korean Peninsula - Dr Robert Winstanley-Chesters, (York St John University). Online and in-person event, 5.30pm-7.00pm.
- 8 - 11 April: British Forum for Ethnomusicology Annual Conference on Music, Nature and Culture - in association with Bath Spa's Intercultural Communication through Practice Research Group. Online event.
- 10 - 24 May: Alternatives to Crisis: Campus for Climate Action - a free online conference in association with the Bath School of Art MA Curatorial Practice, bringing together 27 contributors from all over the world to explore hope through alternatives. Online conference.
- 24 June: Alice Tarbuck and Sophie Robinson: Creativity, Mental Health and Wellbeing - in association with the launch of the Centre for Mental Health, Creativity and Wellbeing, an online conversation about creativity, mental health and wellbeing with Alice Tarbuck and Sophie Robinson.
- 15 January - Evelyn Araluen Corr and Jonathan Dunk: Indigenous literature, poetics and decolonisation
- 12 February - Giovanna Gioli: The Semiotics of Rubble
- 7 May - Robert Winstanley-Chesters and Nicholas Leof Ahlmark: North Korean Ghost Ships
- 13 May - Justyna Deszcz-Tryhubczak: Arboreal Entanglements: Botanic Imagination in Ecopoetry by Children
- 14 October - Claire Ratinon: The Pleasures and Politics of Growing Food
- 28 October - Conor Murphy: Reconstructing and re-evaluating historical droughts and impacts in the British and Irish Isles
- 18 November - Dr Dylan McGarry: Empatheatre: A theatre-based methodology for collaborative, woven, transgressive and 'de-academised' research in South Africa
- 16 December - Professor Sian Sullivan: The Music Returns to Kai-as - a film by the Future Pasts project
- 16 January - Margarita Díaz-Andreu: Sounds and the sacred in rock art soundscapes.
- 13 March - John Wylie: The Common Line: Landscape Politics, Creative Practice and Digital Geographies
- 27 March - Melissa Harrison reading and discussing her new novel, All Among the Barley
- 10 April - Clara Mancini: Animal-Computer Interaction: Animals as Co-Designers of Multispecies Technologically Supported Ecosystems.
- 8 May - Professor Owain Jones: Toxic dwellings? The ecocides of globalised consumer society
- 17 June - Linda Tucker and Jason Turner: How western science and sacred science converge to save a species
- 16 October - Samantha Walton: Is Nature Healing? Exploring the History and Future of the 'Nature Cure'
- 29 October - Prerna Singh Bindra: The Fight for India's Wildlife
- 30 October - Glenna Batson: Human Origami: The Folding Continuum of Human-Environmental Life (workshop and talk)
- 13 November - Rosalind Crisp: DIRt (Dance In Regional disaster zones)
- 11 December - Michelle Bastian: Whale falls, suspended ground, and extinctions never known.
- 17 January - Tim Dee: Writing a Season.
- 26 January - Marie Claire Lavabre: The Politics of Memory.
- 21 February - Susana Carvalho and Rene Bobe Quinteros: A new stand on primate adaptations to complex environments and implications for early human evolution
- 14 March - Simon James: Natural Meanings and Cultural Values.
- 21 March - Tim Ingold: Noise, Sound, Silence.
- 18 April - Performing Environments Forum:
- Thomas Kampe: Moving Beyond: Site-Responses, Eco-Soma & other Performance – Activisms.
- Ellie Nixon: Moving Rock: Embodied Correspondences with the Material World as a Force for Creative Action.
- Tiago Gambogi: The dancer who pulled a canoe on a Xingu river made of tarmac OR The strength in the fragility of the solo Artivist OR When I gave a white rose to BHP Billiton’s CEO.
- 16 May - Erin Kavanagh and Iain Biggs: The Crow Road.
- 17 October - Linda Williams: The Problem with Posthumanism
- 29 October - Glenn Albrecht and Vic McEwan: Solastalgia, Wild Fire, and the Butterfly Kiss.
- 14 November - Mike Hannis and Sian Sullivan: Mining the Skeleton Coast: Nature, Capital and History
- 12 December - Stefan Skrimshire: Eschatological Imagination in an Age of Extinctions.
- February 15 - Julian Wolfreys, Voicing the Land.
- March 15 - Christoph Schwitzer (Bristol Zoo), The Role of Zoos in Conservation (with Biology and Psychology)
- April 12 - Arran Stibbe, Ecolinguistics and the Search for New Stories to Live by
- May 10 - Dolly Jorgensen, The role of cultural memory in early 20th century beaver reintroduction in Sweden.
- May 17 - David Rothenberg, Bird Whale Bug: Why Make Music with Nature? Lecture with performance (with Intercultural Communication through Practice Research Group)
- May 24 - Joni Adamson, Current international developments in the environmental humanities
- Oct. 18 - Merle Patchett, From Sexual Selection to Sex and the City: The Biogeographies of the Blue Bird-of-Paradise.
- Nov. 15 - Lila Matsomoto, Poetic Technologies: Exploring Hebridean renewable energy production through poetry- sculpture collaboration (with Intercultural Communication through Practice Research Group)
- Dec. 13 - Mike Hannis, Killing Nature to Save It? Ethics, Economics and the Trophy Hunting of Black Rhinoceros.
- 5 October - Professor Kate Rigby: Professorial Lecture - Infernal Ecologies: Literature, ethics, and fire 'down under'
The Association of Commonwealth Universities Summer School provides an opportunity for talented university students from around the Commonwealth to come together for an exciting week of expert lectures, group work, field trips, skills development and social events.
The 2017 Summer School was held at Bath Spa University from 5 - 13 August. It explored interrelationships between humans and other living beings, and between cultural practices and environmental problems – and looked at how these can be examined through different academic disciplines and creative arts. Bath Spa University is a world leader in research and teaching in these areas.
The first Environmental Humanities Postgraduate Forum, Environmental Humanities: Perspectives in Practice, took place on 14 July 2017. It was a student-led event, providing an opportunity for presentations on work-in-progress, to which staff were warmly invited.
- Patricia Brien: Stroudwater Scarlet cloth - Exploring the dynamic human & non-human relations in site-specific fabric – boundless Kin(g)doms that matter
- Aiyana Rosen: Human-Animal Relations in the German Dairy Industry - A genealogical analysis
- Ben Crushcov: a talk on writing the script for a feature film about a group of Greenpeace protestors who were arrested in the Arctic in 2013.
- Lydia Halcrow: Mapping place through the visual arts: a contemporary approach to landscape.
- Charlotte Shipperley: “Flooding the Bathtub: The Politics of Invisibility and Community Resilience in Behn Zeitlin’s Beasts of the Southern Wild (2012)”.
- Ruth Olden, PhD: Lost world of the nearby: Minimal ethics on Govan Graving Docks
- Laura Denning: Primordial; Hydrofeminism and Deep Listening
As part of the British Academy’s Festival of the Humanities in 2016, Bath Spa presented three public engagement events concerning peoples’ hopes and fears in relation to environmental change.
Changing Landscapes, Rising Waters: Kate Rigby, Owain Jones and Sam Walton presented a series of short talks and film screenings arising from their current research projects, all of which concerned peoples relationships with the watery worlds of ocean, estuaries and rivers during a time of rapid climatic and environmental change.
Environmental Literature Reading and Discussion: Three of Bath Spa’s creative writers, Stephen Moss, Maggie Gee, and Samantha Walton, read from their work and discussed how it explores the hopes and fears that are inextricably entangled with the living landscapes we inhabit at a time of rapid environmental change and biodiversity loss.
“Gobaith ac ofn; Dwy sgriniad / Hope and fear: two screenings”: A screening of two short films - Timeline and Y Gors - that explored extreme weather in West Wales, challenging the idea that climate change only happens in far-flung places or in the future.
The Inaugural Symposium for the Research Centre for Environmental Humanities was held 15-16 December 2016 at Bath Spa University.
Based around the title, The Environmental Humanities: Doing Interdisciplinarity with Depth, the symposium sought to explore the challenges involved in doing interdisciplinarity well and 'at depth' across the Environmental Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, and to consider the impediments and opportunities that might line our potential pathways to impact.
Follow the links to view videos of the presentations.
15 December 2016
5.15 – 7.00pm: Opening plenary: Bridging the Great Divide
- Richard Kerridge (Chair)
- Mike Hulme (King’s College, London)
- Poul Holm (Trinity University, Dublin)
- Wendy Wheeler (London Metropolitan University and Goldsmiths College, London)
- With Maggie Gee (Bath Spa University)
7.00 – 8.00pm: Official launch by Vice-Provost John Strachan
16 December 2016
9.00 – 10.30am: Onto-epistemologies and ethics – Chair, Paul Reid-Bowen
- Termites, mud daubers and their earths: a multispecies approach to fertility and power in West Africa – James Fairhead (University of Sussex)
- All our relations and kin based ecologies: the new animisms – Graham Harvey (Open University)
- Ontology after Truth? Ethnography and Ethics in an Unravelling World – Mike Hannis and Sian Sullivan (Bath Spa University)
10.50am – 12.20pm: Spatio-temporalities – Chair, Rebecca Schaaf
- Modern Languages in Environmental Humanities – A focus on cultural and linguistic difference – Axel Goodbody (University of Bath)
- Three North Sea Reflections – David Farrier (Edinburgh University)
- Towards Hydrocitizenship – Owain Jones (Bath Spa University)
1.20 – 2.50pm: Inter-species connectivities – Chair, Stephen Moss
- How engagements with local nonhumans might help link British environmentalism with the new archaism and localism of post-Brexit British politics – Michael Northcott (Edinburgh University)
- Avian-accessories as archives: or, what do animals teach us about research practices? – Merle Patchet (University of Bristol)
- Meeting the other than human and the transdisciplinary mode – Isis Brook (Writtle College)
- Interspecies Connectivities – Richard Kerridge (Bath Spa University)
2.50 – 4.20pm: NaturalCultural calamities – Chair, James Jeffers
- Living Under the Volcano: Mt Mayon and co-volcanic communities in the Philippines – Greg Bankoff (University of Hull)
- What is new? What is changing? What remains the same?: rethinking the trajectories of environmental humanities and sciences in the coming decade – Steven Hartman (Mid-Sweden University)
- Writing Tambora: Textuality, Empire, and the Catastrophic Assemblage – David Higgins (English and Environmental Humanities, Leeds University)
- ‘Science’- of value to Hazard & Disaster Challenges; An Exposé on Interdisciplinary Research – Rich Johnson and Esther Edwards (Bath Spa University)
4.40 – 6.20pm: Eco-poetries and ecopoetics – Chair, Terry Gifford
- Reflections at the Intersection of Aesthetics and Environmental Ethics – Emily Brady (Edinburgh University)
- Literature and its Discontents: Environmental Humanities in Practice – Graham Huggan and Sarah Yoho (Leeds University)
- Particularity, poetry and working across disciplines – Harriet Tarlo (Sheffield Hallam University)
6.20 – 7.00pm: Concluding discussion