“Mississippi. An Anthropocene River” Field Station #3: Industry, Indigeneity, and Empire

11.Juni 2019

© Jennifer Colten

Mississippi. An Anthropocene River takes the concept of the Anthropocene – the period of history during which humans have been the dominant influence on climate and the environment – into the field. The project investigates the Mississippi River as an exemplary landscape of global environmental change. Until November 2019, five Field Stations investigate, highlight, and share historical and contemporary issues of their respective region.

The St. Louis region is an complex landscape that carries the memories, meanings, and anxieties of millennia of settlement overlain on a metropolitan area grappling with the persistent, interconnected legacies of industry, race, and empire. The third Field Station, “Anthropocene Vernacular,” will feature the work of artists, researchers, and community organizers. Through a series of projects, they will tell the multigenerational story of how this region’s people have cultivated a distinct everyday culture in the midst of the intense convergence of social, environmental, and economic crises.

This Field Station will focus on how the vernaculars of peoples, places, and landscapes have undergone layering and blurring in order to shape the region over time. Its participants will employ a process that questions whether the current academic approach to studying the Anthropocene has ignored the very center of this era’s ongoing dynamics: the expression and knowledge of those communities who have firsthand experience of living in these landscapes.

To stay updated, visit and see our previous blog on the project.

“Mississippi. An Anthropocene River” is organized by Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin, with the Max Planck Institute for History, Berlin, and many partners in the US and internationally.

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