Monday, April 8, 2019
Searching for the Anthropocene
My new book Searching for the Anthropocene pursues an elusive yet crushing subject: the current geologic era defined by human impact on the planet, and what it feels like become aware of this concept.
Ranging from beech forests and beach fossils to jet engines and airport renovations, from snacks and snipers to fantasies of space travel and nightmares of cars on the streets, this book develops a wide-angle approach to environmental awareness. Blending personal narrative, cultural criticism, and environmental theory, Searching for the Anthropocene offers fresh ways to ponder current conditions of ecological urgency, existential crisis, and social unrest.
The two parts of my book make an awkward, asymmetric pair: my home region of northern Michigan, and the expansive, dispersed, and non-local realm of air travel.
The cover image comes from a series of photographs I took when I was up in Michigan during the winter of 2016-2017, when I would take long walks on the frigid beach and pick up whatever trash I would find, and then afterward take pictures of each day's haul. Here's another one from that same time: