This panel explores forms of understanding and experiencing the atmosphere that do not replicate those seen in the central Western debates. The panel explores how different peoples "make" climate, what they make of it, and the implication it has for global efforts in tackling climate change.
This panel congregates papers that explore forms of understanding, experiencing, and producing the atmosphere that do not replicate those often seen in the central Western debates and in mainstream global media. The ways through which different peoples and cultural traditions "make" climate, and what they make of climate, varies tremendously around the planet. Understanding these forms of engagement with the atmosphere may make explicit many of the presuppositions that ground Western atmospheric imaginaries but remain invisible. Secondly, it may illuminate the complexities of how climate change is perceived and lived at the ground level, and how action in such "local" scale interacts with efforts in tackling the issue at larger scales. And third, it may offer new ideas, metaphors, and sources of inspiration for the urgent collective task of producing a future that differs from scientifically predicted worst-case scenarios, in face of the exhaustion of both state-centered and market-driven approaches to the crisis. Case studies range from the discussion of the reasons countries like Brazil are developing "national" computer models to predict the global climate, to the context in which governors asked people to pray for rain during the ongoing drought in Southwest United States, to the employment of shamanistic rituals to produce dry weather for Bogota's International Theater Festival, to discussions on how indigenous peoples around the planet understand (and react to) the issue of geoengineering, and so on.