First Global Radical Relevances Conference 2018
We invite researchers and artists of all disciplines to join us in a conference that goes beyond the rational and explores what is relevant to lived experience.
Radical Relevances is a multidisciplinary conference addressing complex global phenomena of our time, such as climate change, biodiversity, income inequality, and mass migration and how these relate to the everyday lives of different people.
The First Global Radical Relevances Conference asks: How do economic, social, and cultural practices reflect the global uncertainty of today with its shifting geopolitics and environmental realities? How to engage in new ways of thinking about and practicing in terms of human and nonhuman co-existence and flourishing in the midst of vast predictable and unpredictable planetary transformations? How to study the relevances of certain objective realities that nevertheless escape the sensory equipment of an individual?
The world is rapidly changing through real and observable large-scale and long-term processes, such as financialization, continuing expansion of the extractive frontier, population growth, and increasing global migration, pollution, income inequality, and human alienation from nature. Yet, most such insidious developments tend to lack pragmatic relevance for most urban populations. Such phenomena cannot be directly experienced because they involve spatial and temporal dimensions incommensurate with the pragmatics of everyday life: they are slow enough to be normalized even if they increasingly impact the structures of life. For instance, it is difficult to experience a clear connection between an individual’s personal health, microbial diversity, indoor-air, building materials, and environmental pollution. Further, it is becoming increasingly clear that inundating people with information on climate change is neither enough nor adequate, for instance in order to radically decrease greenhouse gas emissions. These wide scale problematics demand focused, sustained, and transdisciplinary academic discussion. To answer to this demand we launch a novel peer reviewed journal – Radical Relevances. Launching the journal will take the form of proceedings from a conference – the First Global Radical Relevances Conference – that focuses on the above pictured processes and on the subsequent social, political, environmental, and economic reverberations.
We call for social and natural scientists, artists, philosophers and activists to go beyond the rational or rationalized to the actual relevances underlying human activity. Such a focus requires not only more attention to everyday life, but also novel methodologies and research designs. We call for thinking about how to mobilize objectively relevant ideas to people so that these become relevant in their everyday life – at both work and home. The conference aims at serious de-normalization of the status quo, yet even more importantly, to explore, formalize, and theorize answers and resolutions to the urgent and massive problems that humanity and the planet face.