PreviousNext


In a dialogue with a former space engineer from the Ariane program, Sebastian Grevsmühl explains how, with the closure of the Earth through the explorations of the last unknown territories during the 19th and the early 20th century, the exploratory focus moved up towards the sky and space and, subsequently, back to the view of the Earth from up there. Obviously, technologies like photography, balloons, airplanes and rockets also played a crucial role in this evolution. With the space era in full bloom in the 1960s, the idea of the spaceship Earth – our home planet seen as a very large dome-shaped vessel within a controlled atmosphere – became a leading political metaphor, used in the many discourses and manipulated both by political establishments and counterculture. Today, as the international debates about climate change and the ways to confront it are in full swing, this kind of spaceship earthism is coming back. A concept that is not far from the geo-engineering dreams of taking over the atmosphere through technical means. But, as Sebastian Grevsmühl points out, programs like these, besides the doubtfulness of their possible success, carry one main problem: they try to remove political decision processes by leaving all to design and engineering.

expert

  • Sebastian Grevsmühl

date

21/11/2015

location

Musée de l’Homme, Paris

est chercheur en histoire des sciences et de l’environnement à l’Université Pierre et Marie Curie (Paris 6), spécialisé dans l’analyse des cultures visuelles et des métaphores dans les sciences. Il soutient que la reconceptualisation métaphorique de notre planète comme un « vaisseau spatial Terre » a été d’une utilité discutable pour le mouvement environnementaliste.

— ENQUÊTE : Devenir terriens
— PRODUCTION : Blackmarket for Useful Knowledge and Non-Knowledge No. 18
— ÉVÉNEMENT : Devenir terriens : dialogues et exercices pour rétrécir et étendre l’humain

est chercheur en histoire des sciences et de l’environnement à l’Université Pierre et Marie Curie (Paris 6), spécialisé dans l’analyse des cultures visuelles et des métaphores dans les sciences. Il soutient que la reconceptualisation métaphorique de notre planète comme un « vaisseau spatial Terre » a été d’une utilité discutable pour le mouvement environnementaliste.

— ENQUÊTE : Devenir terriens
— PRODUCTION : Blackmarket for Useful Knowledge and Non-Knowledge No. 18
— ÉVÉNEMENT : Devenir terriens : dialogues et exercices pour rétrécir et étendre l’humain

PreviousNext