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This paper considers experiences of speculative immersion as artists and children map the multilayered sonic ecology of Birrarung Marr, a traditional meeting place for Aboriginal language groups of the Eastern Kulin Nation. We explore how speculative practices of immersion shaped the mapping of precolonial, contemporary, and future soundscapes of Birrarung Marr, and the ceremonial burial of these sonic cartographies for future listeners. Bringing together Indigenous and non-Indigenous concepts of immersion in mutually respectful and purposeful conversation, we work to re-theorise immersive experience as a process of ecological multiplicity and affective resonance, rather than one of phenomenological containment. By approaching immersion as both a concept and a sensation that ruptures the boundary between body and environment, we follow how immersion ‘drifts’ across porous thresholds of sensing, thinking, dreaming, making, and knowing in situated environmental education contexts. In doing so, the paper stresses the importance of speculative immersive experience in cultivating liveable urban futures under conditions of climate change, and responds to the need for new understandings of immersion that take more-than-human ecologies of experience into account.
The assemblage of water/watery/watering is a lively cartography of how water may be accounted for when theorising with and through environmental education research. Challenging the universalising claims of Western technoscience and the colonial logic of extraction, the article develops an alternative theoretical mapping of environmental education through engagements with Ingold’s (2007, 2012, 2015) concepts of lines, knots, and knotting. For this article and for the Special Issue in which it is housed, the concepts of such knottings are defined as an assemblage of haecceities, lived events that are looped, tethered and entangled as material and conceptual agencies that inhere within situated encounters. Thus, this article grapples with the need to account for water differently in contemporary posthuman ecologies. To overcome anthropocentric and mastery-oriented approaches, various other ways to account for water in science or environmental education will continue to come to the surface, bubbling and rushing like a waterfall as they have done in this work. Some of these will include thinking with water, which will be central to a theoretical mapping of water that seeks embrace sticky knots. The article explores a (re)turn to artful practices and encounters as spaces in which posthumanist concepts for environmental education might be cultivated.
Over the last three decades, scientists have uncovered the extent of human impacts on the earth's operating systems with increasing clarity and precision. These findings have prompted scientific claims that we have transitioned out of the Holocene and into the Anthropocene epoch in the earth's geological history (Crutzen & Stoermer, 2000). At the same time, the traditional humanist underpinnings of the university have been eroded by the ongoing digitisation, massification, and decentralisation of higher education. This article argues that higher education has a crucial role to play in responding to the Anthropocene thesis, which at the same time provides a powerful impetus for reimagining the university through posthumanist concepts. In developing this analysis, conceptual distinctions are drawn between visions of hope and disaster, the local and the regional, dwelling and construction, and emplacement and displacement in the context of university learning environments. The learning environment is specifically addressed throughout as a fluid and transitional space for experimenting with concepts and practices that operate outside of humanist constructs and disciplinary boundaries. As the very idea of ‘the university campus’ threatens to become an anachronism, the author concludes with a speculative proposition for the reimagining of the university in the Anthropocene era.
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