Archiv des Autors: Lilli

Two Events with Banu Subramaniam

Banu Subramaniam (Prof. of Women, Gender, Sexuality Studies at the University of  Massachusetts, Amherst) will be our guest for next week.

Writing NatureCultures – Workshop with Banu Subramaniam

Monday, 19.6.17 | 12 (s.t.!)-13:45 | SFG 2210

Against the background of our previous discussions of NatureCultures as heuristic tool or of case studies tackling naturecultures emprically and analytically, this little workshop puts the emphasis on writing naturecultures. For approximating how we can and do write (make visible) naturecultures, we are very happy that Banu Subramaniam will join and share her experiences with writing and mixing genres in „Ghost Stories for Darwin. The Science of Variation and the Politics of Diversity“ (2014, Ludwik Fleck Prize 2016) with us. Taking her book as a starting point we would like to discuss questions like the following:  What are good formats and genres of describing, narrating, storying, assembling, writing the commingling of nature(s) and culture(s)? What consequenses does an „opening up of epistemic authority“ have for writing naturecultures? How does „writing naturecultures“ differ from „writing cultures“? How is the idea of „being haunted“ transforming the author’s position / voice.

If you have not yet had the chance to read/look into the book please check out at least the attached introduction for preparation.If you are interested in reading further but do not have access to the book, write an email to and we will provide you with the files.

Counter-Narratives of the Enlightenment: Tales from the edges of Science and Religion in India – Talk in the World-of-Contradiction lecture series

Wed, 21.6.17 | 18-20h | Rotunde (Cartesium)

Banu Subramaniam explores the worlds of science and religion in contemporary India. In contrast to other religious fundamentalisms, Hindu nationalism embraces science as an important and critical part of religion. Religious nationalists in contemporary India have selectively, and strategically, used rhetoric from both science and Hinduism, modernity and orthodoxy, western and eastern thought to build a powerful but potentially dangerous vision of a Hindu nation. With aspirations for a global and modern Hinduism, she argues that scientific and religious practices in contemporary India are inextricably interconnected and result in fluid processes and practices of both institutions. In her presentation, she explores how mythological narratives, preternatural tales, and ghostly apparitions mingle effortlessly with animist traditions as well as the material, experimental, and institutional practices of technosciences. This emerging “syncretic pragmatism” challenges us to move beyond the oppositional stances of science and religion, to consider counter narratives to the enlightenment tales of reason and unreason. Ultimately to understand contemporary technoscience in India, we need new epistemological and methodological tools, and story making practices to make visible the many phantasmogoric naturecultural worlds within.

Vortrag von Sven Bergmann am 30. Mai

Das Auftauchen von Mikroplastik: Meeresmüll, marine Wissensproduktion, Umweltgerechtigkeit und die Politik der Maßstäbe

Dienstag, 30.5.2017 | 18:15-19:45 | Rotunde im Cartesium (Enrique-Schmidt-Str. 5)

Plastik(müll) im Meer ist ein hybrides Objekt, emblematisch für Natur-Kultur-Vermischungen und ihre noch unbekannten Auswirkungen. Mit der Etablierung des Begriffs Mikroplastik im Jahr 2004 wurde ein Maßstab eingeführt, um Plastikkonzentrationen im Verhältnis zu Plankton (Salzwasser) oder Fischlarven (Süßwasser) zu bestimmen. Doch was bedeutet eine hohe Konzentration von Mikroplastik in der Umwelt oder in spezifischen Ökosystemen? Was bedeutet es, wenn an bestimmten Stellen in Gewässern viel Mikroplastik enthalten ist oder wenn ein Teil des Sandes am Strand nun aus Plastik-Pellets besteht? Wann wird mit der Problematisierung dieser Maßstäbe ein eher ästhetisches Problem identifiziert und wann wird damit ein Potenzial von physischer oder toxikologischer Gefährdung adressiert?

Wenn menschliche Hinterlassenschaften dazu führen, dass in den Ozeanen neuartige Lebensformen entstehen, irritiert dies die konventionelle Unterscheidung in Kategorien wie Natur und Kultur. Stattdessen fordert es die Sozial- und Kulturwissenschaften heraus, einen neuen analytischen Umgang mit diesen hybriden Gegenständen zu finden.

In seinem Vortrag wird Dr. Sven Bergmann entlang einer anthropologischen und einer STS-Perspektive diesen Verschränkungen nachgegangen. Dabei wird er – ausgehend von seiner ethnografischen Forschung in Deutschland, Neufundland/Kanada und Chile/Rapa Nui – sowohl simple Konzeptionen der Trennung von Natur und Kultur sowie vereinfachte Schemata der technischen Lösung des Problems kritisch diskutieren.

Dr. Sven Bergmann ist wissenschaftlicher Mitarbeiter am Institut für Ethnologie und Kulturwissenschaft der Universität Bremen und arbeitet derzeit an zwei Forschungsprojekten zur wissenschaftlichen und politischen Problematisierung von Plastik(müll) in den Meeren:
„Plastik als neue Lebensform“ (Volkswagen-Stiftung) „Knowing the Seas as NatureCultures“ (M4 Explorationsprojekt).

Talk by Friederike Gesing, 16 Mai

Working with Nature in Aotearoa New Zealand: An ethnography of coastal protection

16 Mai 2017, 18h, Rotunde im Cartesium

This talk opens up a conceptual perspective on coastal natures emerging from coastal protection practices. To work with nature and not against it: this sociotechnical imaginary provides a shared understanding of alternative, soft coastal protection for a growing community of practice. Based on long-term fieldwork in Aotearoa New Zealand, Friederike Gesing draws on close ethnographic encounters with dune restoration volunteers, coastal management experts, surfer-scientists, and Maori conservationists. Understanding their soft protection projects as sociomaterial practices, she shows different coastal naturecultures in the making, emerging as do-it-yourself protection, native landscape, threatened public space, or nature enhanced through soft engineering.

Friederike Gesing (University of Bremen, artec) is senior researcher in the research area of sustainable development and environmental governance. For her excellent dissertation he was rewarded the Bremer Studienpreis 2016.

Find all information on the flyer.

Talk by Uli Beisel, 8 Mai

8 Mai 2017, 12:15-13:45, SFG 2210
„One Health(y) Future? Entanglement of Health and Agriculture; Past, Present and Future in Insect Control in Ghana“ – Talk by Uli Beisel (University of Bayreuth)

The Anopheles gambiae mosquito embodies malaria’s past, present and future. Malaria’s past is inscribed in today’s and tomorrow’s mosquito genome. However, encoded are not only past malaria control interventions, but also agricultural pest control choices. This talk analyses these entanglements of health and agriculture and discusses those with reference to the health futures the One Health movement imagines and makes (im)possible.




Uli Beisel is Juniorprofessor for Culture and Technology in Africa at the University of Bayreuth. Her work is inspired by feminist and postcolonial science and technology studies, and by medical, environmental and multispecies anthropology and geography:

„I have worked on mosquito-parasite-human entanglements in malaria control in Ghana and Sierra Leone, and continue to be fascinated by boundary practices between human and nonhuman organisms, as well as their possibilities of coexistence. My research is guided by the question how we might live well with organisms and substances that are harmful to human health. In this context I am interested in mutating mosquitoes and resistant parasites; zoonotic diseases; insecticides and pesticides; global health technologies, infrastructures and their crises; practices and politics of diagnosing and testing; evidence, speculation and ignorance; and the shifting landscapes of energy and waste in sub-Saharan Africa.“



BNCL Program Summer 2017

For summer semester 2017 we are looking forward to three events of Bremen NatureCultures Lab. Changes will be updated regularly on this page.

10 April 2017, 12:15-13:45, SFG 2210
NatureCultures vs. Political Ecology – Real buzz or old in a new bottle?
Reading & Discussion Session based on: Anna Tsing (2015), The Mushroom at the End of the World: On the Possibility of Life in Capitalist Ruins. Part III/chap 11-15, p 149-213.

8 Mai 2017, 12:15-13:45, SFG 2210
Talk by Uli Beisel: „One Health(y) Future? Entanglement of Health and Agriculture; Past, Present and Future in Insect Control in Ghana“

16 Mai 2017, 18:15-19:45, Rotunde im Cartesium (attention: different time and location)
„Working with Nature in Aotearoa New Zealand: An ethnography of coastal protection“ – Talk by Friederike Gesing (University of Bremen)

19 June 2017, 12:00 (s.t.!!!)-13:45, SFG 2210
Writing NatureCultures – Workshop with Banu Subramaniam (details will be announced)

Next lab meeting on Monday 19th December

19 December, 12:15-13:45, The Box (ZMT) (Wiener Straße 7)
„A Research Vessel as Boundary Place of Knowledge Production: The Meteor in the Eastern Atlantic, Summer 2016″ – an input by Anna-Katharina Hornidge’s (ZMT Bremen) that we would like to take as an opportunity to discuss more broadly legitimation strategies of doing STS-research in interdisciplinary/collaborative fields

Talk by Aníbal García Arregui (Wien), 29 November

„The Scientist, the Shaman and the Shaman’s Shaman: Climate Change as Ontographical Challenge“ 

29 November (Tuesday!),18:15-19:45, Rotunde im Cartesium


Trees and rainfall are related. Everybody knows that. But, to what extent? A climate scientist and a shaman claim that Amazonian trees are determining atmospheric dynamics on a global scale. But are they really talking about the same forest? The same rain? The same world? This talk engages with what has been presented in the vocabulary of the recent ‘ontological turn’ as being incommensurable anthropological differences. Aníbal G. Arregui assesses this discussion – and the role of its new actors – against the backdrop of climate change and environmental degradation.



Aníbal García Arregui does research and teaching in environmental anthropology, political ecology, Amazonian anthropology, ethnographic methods and theory. His regional focus lies on the lower Amazon and Brazil (ribeirinhos and quilombolas). In his current research project  he works on „Translating the Climate: the Amazon as Cosmopolitical Tension“. In 2013 he published his doctoral thesis La Selva Tecnológica: Sistemas Sociotécnicos y Antropología Simétrica en Comunidades Ribereñas del Bajo Amazonas„. He is currently working as a lecturer in “Economic Anthropology and Environmental Politics” at the University of Vienna.

Download the flyer for the event here. If you want to receive preparation text for this  session, please contact Katrin Amelang (