Caroline Levine: "The Activist Humanist"
The Zabel Lectures series presents Caroline Levine, David and Kathleen Ryan Professor of Humanities in the Department of English at Cornell University. Levine will discuss her latest book The Activist Humanist: Form and Method in the Climate Crisis (Princeton UP, out October 17, 2023).
As climate catastrophes intensify, why do literary and cultural studies scholars so often remain committed to the separation of aesthetic study from the nitty-gritty of political change? Levine makes the case for an alternative view, arguing that humanists have the tools to mobilize political power—and the responsibility to use those tools to avert the worst impacts of global warming. Building on the theory developed in her award-winning book, Forms, Levine shows how formalist methods can be used in the fight for climate justice.
Levine is the author of Forms: Whole, Rhythm, Hierarchy, Network, winner of the James Russell Lowell Prize from the Modern Language Association (Princeton); Provoking Democracy: Why We Need the Arts; and The Serious Pleasures of Suspense.
Sponsored by the Department of English and co-sponsored by the Departments of American Studies and Cultural Studies & Comparative Literature, the Environmental Humanities Institute, and the Institute on the Environment.