Native Communities and Climate Change, Center Stage

This article was originally published on HowlRound, a knowledge commons by and for the theatre community, in April 2016. by Jaisey Bates A simple equation for survival: In this Anthropocene Age of human-wrought catastrophic climate change, Indigenous people including US Native communities are center stage in dual roles: as those disproportionately affected by the escalating environmental devastation, and as those uniquely voiced with perspectives of vital importance. If we wish to sustain this world for our children and future generations, we must with open minds gather and share information and expertise. We must commit to positive change and work together toward possible cures. Therefore, ergo, ipso facto, in sum: We need Native voices center stage. We need a good Ceremony: We need, collectively, to break up with Aristotle and elementally reframe and fast-track evolve a holistic understanding—an Indigenous understanding—of what it means to be human in a vibrant world that includes and transcends humankind. We need Native voices—historically dehumanized, marginalized, silenced, and subject to appropriation—center stage in all discussions leading to effective

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Wayfinding in a Time of Resistance 

by Andrea Krupp On November 8, 2016, America elected a new president, and with that the world slipped out of joint. Gone sideways, I vacillate between states of dread, grief, confusion, panic, and self-medicated retreat. I know you feel me, but don’t let’s fall into despair. We are lost, but we will find our way. I believe that as long as we have air to breathe and water to drink, humanity will continue to evolve because it is “in our nature” to strive. As a break from all that striving, it’s comforting to sink into the long view, to think about deep time and humanity’s profound insignificance in the universe, to gain emotional distance from this broken world. Yet the here-and-now urgently requires our attention! As we know too well, it is also in our nature to destroy. The second hand of the Doomsday clock just nudged closer to midnight and we really do not have time for an evolutionary detour into anti-science,

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Another World Is Possible: Displays from the Women’s March

by Julia Levine “We are unstoppable, another world is possible.” One of my favorite rally cries from the Women’s March on Washington is carrying me through the first week of this bonkers administration. This phrase, and the experience of being surrounded by thousands of people showing up for similar goals, signified to me the possibility for a sustainable future. The creativity on display, through signs, costumes, and performance, contributed to the impact of the weekend. These displays offered intersectional perspectives – the Women’s March was in no way solely about women, but about the equitable and just world that we want to live in, despite what the people in power have in mind. Walking out of the D.C. Metro on Friday, January 20 was like entering a ghost town. No cars, very few people, eerie silence. There was the familiarity of red, white, and blue, of a Starbucks on every corner. Familiar, but not comforting. These symbols of nationalism and

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Performance, Video & Ritual in the Era of Climate Change

by Monet Clark Given the monumental devastation brought on by global climate change, as an artist I feel the urgency to be vigilant, a warrior and, despite our dystopian present and the probability of a worse dystopian future, courageous enough to hope. Last year I found myself in a state of veritable despair. I wondered,”How can I make an impact on something so much larger than me?” I was in the midst of making my performance/video piece BUNNY GIRL, shooting from the gut, with no script nor understanding of where the piece was going. Towards the end, however, cathartically the piece revealed itself and gave me my answer. I found a new focus in my work, drawing from a side of myself that I used to hide from the art world, the suppression of which has played into the patriarchal structure contributing to this global mess we’re in… BUNNY GIRL is driven by the crises state of our biosphere. In it, I play a Playboy Bunny/animal of the

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