(Non-)Humans, Environment, and Moments of Encounter
University of Washington, Seattle
April 17-18, 2020
Sponsored by the UW Taiwan Studies Program, Department of Landscape Architecture/College of Built Environments, and Chiang Ching-kuo Foundation
Landscapes often exist as material records, surrounding environments, or representations. We propose to move beyond these frameworks to see landscapes as embodied modes of habitation and of human and non-human encounters with the land in which ongoing processes of acting in and with the world take place. By focusing on processes of encounter, occupation, and mediation, we also seek to redefine “land” more broadly, for example on human interactions with natural, social, and imagined worlds, or alternate -scapes such as waterscapes, bodyscapes, technoscapes, mediascapes, cyberscapes, etc.
Taiwan has long been a compelling site of ecological heterogeneity, cultural multiplicities, and geopolitical contestation. Its landscapes embody the complex interactions and negotiations between the different waves of human occupation and their environment. With its natural and cultural diversities, Taiwan becomes a productive site for the theorization of land/scaping as an epistemological shift from landscape (noun) to landscape (verb). Land/scaping as a critical concept beyond the confines of existing representations unfolds the heuristic potential for remapping both Taiwan and Taiwan Studies. Such methodological reframing brings to the fore the tension between the notion of perspective—its formation, translation, and reconfiguration—and the interlocking web of land(s), landscape(s) and landscaping.
How have the different modes of land/scaping in and of Taiwan been formed, revealed, effaced, shaped and altered? How have notions such as Formosa/Taiwan and Taiwan(ese)/non- Taiwan(ese) been (re)defined in these land/scaping processes? How have the different approaches to land/scaping influenced the way Taiwan is seen, heard, felt, and communicated? We invite contributions that address these questions across disciplinary perspectives.
Potential topics may include, but are not limited to:
• Place-making and identity (re)formation (such as gender, ethnicity, etc.)
• Floating or changing space/place; the rural/urban
• Temporality of landscape; sites of memory; remains/ruins
• Emotions, flows of affect; collective trauma/social suffering
• Work, labor, human body, and embodied experiences; collective agency
• Land ownership, land problems, land justice
• Technology and knowledge production of nature and land
• Mediascape, cultural genres, generic landscape
• Environmental humanities and environmental studies; human and non-human interactions (air, land, water, energy, animals)
We welcome cross-disciplinary approaches (e.g., between literature, film, geography, environmental studies, anthropology, archaeology, history, urban studies, architecture, art history, performance studies). We especially encourage junior scholars (PhD candidates, postdocs, adjunct and non-tenured faculty) to submit proposals.
Participants will be expected to pre-circulate, read, and discuss substantive works-in-progress, such as dissertation/manuscript chapters or journal articles. If there is group interest, a special journal issue can be organized and proposed from the workshop papers.
Two nights of local accommodation and meals will be provided for all participants. Additional limited travel funding may be available to subsidize domestic airfare for those without funding support from their home institutions.
Please send a 300-word abstract and a brief (1-2 paragraph) academic biography as a single PDF file to email@example.com by December 21, 2019. If the abstract is part of a larger project (i.e. a manuscript, dissertation, etc.), please also provide brief context (2-3 sentences) of the larger project. Participants will be notified in late January.