Latour Gifford Lectures 2013: Gaia’s Puzzling Features (3/6)

  1. Begins with comparison between Lovelock and Galileo.
  2. The view from nowhere – disembodiment.
  3. Gaia brought the earth to the centre and made us responsible.
  4. A ‘curse’ attached to the Gaia theory.
  5. What people under what conditions through what agency.
  6. People of Gaia not the same as people of ‘nature’.
  7. Just because entity named after god does not necessarily act as one (and vice versa).
  8. Gaia and Lovelock vs. Medicine and Pasteur.
  9. Comparisons in approach. Quoting from both now.
  10. Performance, attribute and ‘trial’ before name.
  11. Every item in the scenery of ‘nature’ interrupted and rendered mobile by invisible characters.
  12. Inert agents magically awoken and now ‘fiercely’ alive!
  13. Earth processes vs. Fermentation. Everything made to move.
  14. Still riffing off his Pasteur work here…
  15. That is reduction to a ‘sentient being’ or goddess (Gaia).
  16. Gaia as ‘providential engineer’. Need to explore.
  17. But no holistic nature to Gaia per se.
  18. Organisms curving environment to own needs. Manipulations changing its own world.
  19. Waves of action that do not take notice of any categorisations (inside/outside, scale).
  20. Life as more messier than economists and neo-darwinists suppose.
  21. No scalar relationship here. Only a historical result of connections between creatures.
  22. Space makes an entry. No empty container. Human Geographers rejoice. #blgiff
  23. Narratives rising or falling on strength and weakness of actors re: Pasteur’s microbes, Lovelock’s Gaia components.
  24. What to call this? History/Her-story. Distribution of agency. Gaia-story? Geo-story?
  25. Geostory of a planet -no harmony. A ‘contingent cascade’. No unity. Turmoil of geostory.
  26. Q: Can Gaia be extended to other planetary entities, instances?
  27. Yes, in short. Lovelock does necessarily identify earth and earth only as existence of Gaia.
  28. Q on interdisciplinarity in academia.
  29. Latour: Lovelock’s Gaia theory reverses the move to cosmic unity created by Copernicus and Galileo and invests earth with renewed uniqueness
  30. What as the successor? Geostory as a part of it. Human Geographers rejoice (pt. 2), I guess. #blgiff
  31. Geostory was put forward with a chuckle by Latour. Not meant egotistically!
  32. Another Q on possible disciplines in Latour’s hypothetical university. Would there be geopyschology?
  33. Yes, as long as there are connections.
  34. Q on scale, parts and wholes. Nice. Contingency and necessity. Fragility and solidity.
  35. Will again ‘storify’ so all tweets are together. Entertaining again from Latour. #blgiff
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