Whose Planetary Consciousness?

Date
-
Event Sponsor
Department of History
British History Lecture Series
H&S Oceanic Imaginaries Project
Center for South Asia
Location
Lane History Corner, Room 307

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Recent work has suggested that the emergence of planetary consciousness marks a threshold in human life on a fast-warming planet. This lecture traces the origins of one strand of "planetary consciousness" to the early twentieth century and asks how far that way of seeing life on Earth continues to be marked by its imperial origins. Drawing in particular on Indian debates from the last quarter of the twentieth century, it asks: does planetary consciousness stand in the way of earthly justice?

Sunil Amrith is the Renu and Anand Dhawan Professor of History at Yale University, with a secondary appointment as Professor at the Yale School of the Environment. He is also current Chair of the South Asian Studies Council at Yale’s MacMillan Center. Amrith is the author of four books, with a fifth, The Burning Earth, to be published by W.W. Norton in September 2024. He is a 2017 MacArthur Fellow, and received the 2022 Heineken Prize in History.



This event will be chaired by Professor Priya Satia, Raymond A. Spruance Professor of International History and Professor of History at Stanford University. Professor Satia's latest book is Time's Monster: How History Makes History (Belknap/Penguin, 2020). She is currently working on a new book on British colonialism in Punjab and its legacies.