Date of Award

2020

Document Type

Undergraduate Thesis

Department

Environmental Program

First Advisor

Amy Seidl

Second Advisor

Cameron Davis

Keywords

Anthropocene, Systems Theory, Graphic Novel, Sense of Place, Climate Change Communication, Environmental Art

Abstract

Climate change is one of the most pressing issues of our times, yet it continues to be a topic that is not addressed with the urgency and action that it fully deserves. This lack of understanding is largely due to discrepancies in the ways that climate science is communicated and taught to the general public. The recent declaration of the Anthropocene, a new geologic epoch named for the influence of humans on Earth, warrants new ways of communicating about climate change. Art allows for novel ways of understanding these issues and contrasts the typically elitist methods of climate communication that tend to remain in the hands of scientists and academics. Over the course of the last year, I have begun the process of writing a book that deconstructs the dichotomous fields of art and science. Through merging personal narratives and drawings with information about climate science, the Anthropocene, sense of place, and systems theory, I hope to form a cohesive narrative about what it is like to be a young person exploring these topics while on the precipice of the Anthropocene; the questions that have arisen, the concerns, the fear, the chaos, and the hope. The intended audience for the Geography of Home is anyone who is searching for a new type of climate communication, one that centers around personal experience and relationships between natural and social systems. By combining art and words into a graphic novel, The Geography of Home becomes a launching point for a new type of discourse and understanding of the rapidly evolving issues of the Anthropocene.

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