Mediation at the Moraine, Jeff Diamanti

Jeff Diamanti, University of Amsterdam

As a generative exercise, “At the Moraine” lingers in a landscape that is hypermediated by dominant discourses of climate change, economic development, prospecting, ecological mourning, and post-coloniality. Mediations matter, of course, but they are set via channels that are hardwired and compulsory, if not compulsive. But the landscape in Ilulissat makes available other channels; different concerns run through it. We hope to work out a provisional schema to unpack these concerns and draw into focus how it is that many of our orientations and analytic dispositions potentially come together. In so doing, we also hope to evaluate the premediation of the future; we are investigating new terms while we are situated among ideas, affects and histories that matter to this landscape but are otherwise rendered invisible or abstract by the climate sciences and environmental humanities alike. 

The moraine is a geophysical materialization of multiple histories. As an imprint of glacial retreat, it serves as a heuristic to inquire how materials mediate planetary knowledge; how to evaluate new disciplinary formations at the conjunction of the geosphere, the cryosphere; the hydrosphere; and the technosphere. It requires that we develop a responsiveness to the infrastructural embeddedness humans have built up across the earth’s surface and down into its depths. The moraine tells stories of a genre that is hard to hear but which is nevertheless felt as your body moves through it. It unnerves old habits of thought, undisciplining methods by making them yield to tipping points that push new questions about how climate changes theory.