[Iag-list] ‘Of Flood and Ice’: a seminar with Cymene Howe and Dominic Boyer

Tim Neale timneale at gmail.com
Tue Oct 15 16:22:04 AEDT 2019

‘Of Flood and Ice’: a seminar with Cymene Howe and Dominic Boyer
15:30-17:00, Monday, 2 December 2019
Performance Space, Library at the Dock, 107 Victoria Harbour Promenade,
Docklands VIC 3008

ABSTRACT: The melting of glaciers and ice sheets is accelerating, as is
thermal expansion of the oceans, and these vectors together virtually
guarantee that sea level rise by 2100 will meet or exceed the highest
projections of UNFCCC scientists. Rising surface temperatures likewise
guarantee new conditions of drought and flood, exacerbated by a slowing jet
stream that will tend to stall weather systems in unpredictable ways. Our
changing cryospheres and hydrospheres promise misery to millions across the
planet. But they also reveal forms of material connectivity that could
potentially be mobilized in the struggle against climate change and the
petroculture that produced it. In this presentation, we juxtapose Cymene
Howe’s research on the loss of glaciers in Iceland with Dominic Boyer’s
project on Houston area flood victims’ recovery from Hurricane Harvey to
explore a concept we call “hydrological globalization:” the sociomaterial
connections and cultural impacts that follow from the redistribution of
water across the planet. We discuss in particular how glaciers are being
reconceptualized as vulnerable beings and how Houstonians are coming to
terms with the more common presence of floodwater. We introduce a new tool
from NASA-JPL that allows us to better understand what specific glacial
basins are contributing to sea level rise in the world’s coastal cities,
allowing for a visualization of hydrological globalization in action. We
close with reflections on the researchers’ recent initiative to install a
memorial to the first major Icelandic glacier to be lost to climate change,

This seminar is supported by ADI’s Culture, Environment and Science stream.

REGISTER: https://adi.deakin.edu.au/events/of-flood-and-ice

Dr Timothy Neale
Senior Research Fellow
Deakin University, Burwood, Australia
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