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Inside the Ivory Tower Lunch N LearnMarch 27, 2019
Robert Lapp, Department of English
Poetry for the Anthropocene
In this talk, Robert Lapp will describe his research into “ecopoetry,” or the various kinds of poetry being written in response to the environmental crisis in an era when the impact of humans on the planet that has been dubbed “the Anthropocene.” Examples will include (among others) Baba Brinkman’s “Rap Guide to Climate Chaos,” the Dark Mountain project, and (in a work that illustrates the insights of the new field of biosemiotics), Les Murray’s “Translations from the Natural World.” Poetry is well positioned to play a transformative role in the coming transition from “business as usual” to “climate wilding” because it can leverage the emotional and ethical issues often left out of scientific or economic facts. It can also deploy the human imagination to think outside the box, so that in addition to carefully-witnessed “realism,” sharp satire, and poignant elegy, it can offer survival-oriented visionary prophecy, often mixed with a leaven of dark humour.