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“Toxicity, Waste, and Detritus in the Global South: Africa and Beyond,

Short adventures into our planet’s toxic sensorium, by Africanists and some of their scholarly kin.‬

Pamila Gupta
Oct 2017

Planet Earth has entered the time of the Anthropocene. For natural scientists, this means that human activity, taken as a whole, has come to rival geological and biophysical forces in its effect on the planet. Disturbing material comparisons communicate the deep weirdness of this fact. For example, there’s now enough concrete on the planet to produce a 2mm thick, full-scale replica of Earth, and enough plastic to completely wrap that replica in cling film. In the time of the Anthropocene, humans are turning the planet inside out, redistributing matter, putting molecules out of place.