How do atmospheric conditions, such as the weather, influence the lives of human and nonhuman creatures? Directing our attention away from a focus on the 'earthliness' of existence to the aerial and atmospheric will add to further rethink our place within an ever-changing world.
Anthropological studies have so far paid little attention to the weather and the atmospheric conditions in which life is lived. One reason might be that atmospheric phenomena, such as weather, are difficult to grasp within existing theoretical frameworks, troubling boundaries of the material and the immaterial, time and temporality, as well as perceiver and the perceived. It is our contention that a focus on the currents of weather and the atmospheric can contribute to a more nuanced understanding of how people in different contexts experience themselves and the worlds in which they live. Contributors to this panel, then, are invited to investigate the relevance of weather in everyday life and to pay attention to how the lives of both humans and other creatures are bound up with the movements and influences of weather and atmospheric conditions. We are interested in questions of: How do people conceptualise and understand weather and atmospheric conditions? What role do kinetic, somatic and sensory factors play in the experience of weather? Can weather be understood as an object of perception? How does weather relate to particular places and practices? How might a focus on weather change our understandings of materiality and time?