«Connaissance No(s) Limit(es)»

ENERGIES 2050 will make a communication at the First Congress of the French Association of Ethnology and Anthropology (AFEA *) which will take place on 21-24 September 2011 at EHESS, Paris.

Affiche Congrès Afea

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Download the Conference Booklet (265 pages)

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The intervention will take place on Monday 21 September in the workshop “Savoirs sur la nature”

(Workshop 43 – Session 1 – 13:30 – 15:00 – See pages 88-91 of the booklet)

Presentation of the workshop: Knowledge about nature is the subject of negotiations between local actors, since they involve forms of translation between different modes of perception of the surrounding beings. The production and use of data is a central issue in the discussions between “experts” and “amateurs”. How are these local recompositions transformed by large global mobilizations like the one that takes place around global warming? And how do they take place in places other than Europe, as in the nature reserves of Mexico? What consequences can be drawn for the political and theoretical approach of the ethnographic investigation?

Title of the contribution of ENERGIES 2050: From the observation to the questioning or the need to elaborate a new field of intervention and knowledge for anthropology and ethnology: example of the climate issue

Summary of publication:

The issue of climate change and the international response have challenged a great deal of certainty about how our societies are organized, exchanged, and functioning. The challenges are all the more important because they are numerous and interdependent. This transversality has highlighted the impotence of our system of international governance and challenges us to the processes and modalities for the elaboration and implementation of collective decisions in the light of questions that now go far beyond national and local levels.

Beyond concepts, the question of the perimeter of the object studied, but also the definition of territories of experience and even the terminology employed, raise more than ever the question of knowledge and as a preamble to individual and collective action to be defined and put in place.

Faced with the reality of this multiplicity of transversality, to identify our mode of collective construction while seeking to define the fundamentals inscribed in the local re-questions the disciplines of ethnology and anthropology.

Beyond the need to understand the changes and challenges that our societies must understand, it is essential to be able to understand the processes of identification and acceptance of the actions to be put in place.

The guiding framework for this presentation will build on the work in progress. The structuring element is the concept of sustainable development or eco-development and the fact that it can be assimilated to the creation of a founding element for present and future generations. A collective imagination to be invented or confirmed, this subject will allow us to illustrate the question of the creation of knowledge in a context of plural reality where borders no longer exist and where the notion of local can be analyzed only in a perspective.

We will illustrate our remarks by focusing on the relationship between man and his natural environment with regard to the climate issue and more particularly its links with energy. We will conclude on the challenges but also the opportunities for the development of new knowledge and fields of knowledge essential to the understanding of the challenges that are available to us.

The article will be downloadable on the ENERGIES 2050 website after the Congress. It will also appear in the documents to be published later by the AFEA.

(*) Presentation of the AFEA

AFEA was founded in 2009 with the aim of promoting the plurality of anthropology, its development, its practices, its transmission and its future in its many fields of application. It is an organization whose aim is to bring together anthropologists and to unite all the associations of anthropology in France.

AFEA is a resolutely open and plural association which aims to give anthropology greater visibility, serve as a link to public and private institutions concerned with the research, teaching and employment of anthropologists, and to be an actor the development of research in France.

AFEA is a member of the World Council of Anthropological Associations (WCAA).

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