Sunday, June 13, 2010
sneaking a post in here. i just finished uncertain peril, a book by claire hope cummings about genetic engineering, the privatization of public institutions and the politicization of science. so interesting and important and thorough and, in many instances, shocking. i wanted to dog ear every page, but restrained myself since i had the book from the library.
cummings is a journalist, and she grounds the chapters of her book in specific places, like berkeley, hawai'i, abu ghraib, norway, vietnam, iowa, mexico. she gives the reader scientific, historical and political information, while telling fascinating stories. and, i don't want to tell too much, but storytelling, it turns out, is vital to our being able to deal with and transform the environmental mess we are in. stories and myths shape how we think.
i just read the first page of another book i checked out, diet for a hot planet, and it seems like it's going to be a continuation along similar themes. anna lappé opens the book by quoting environmental philosopher susan griffin:
Like artistic and literary movements, social movements are driven by imagination...Every important social movement reconfigures the world in the imagination. What was obscure comes forward, lies are revealed, memory shaken, new delineations drawn over the old maps: It is from this new way of seeing the present that hope emerges for the future...Let us begin to imagine the worlds we would like to inhabit, the long lives we will share, and the many futures in our hands.
these words about stories, art, social movements and the imagination encourage me.