CFP: Compositing Man: Worldly-ecologies & Life/Death Affirming Perspectives

Jan 09, 2024

Compositing Man: Worldly-ecologies & Life/Death Affirming Perspectives Call for Papers: philoSOPHIA 15, pub date est. for Jan/Feb 2025

Guest Editors: Xalli Zúñiga & Stephanie Rivera Berruz

philoSOPHIA: Journal of Transcontinental Philosophy Feminism

The colonial dynamics by which global capitalism asserts its dominance, establishing itself as the Earth’s prevailing economic system, give rise to metabolic rifts that tamper with the relations that make life possible. Through colonization, global capitalism fractures living systems by redefining all elements of life as resources—rendered inanimate, isolated, and mechanized for the sole purpose of extraction and wealth accumulation. As a result, the histories of social and environmental spheres are disjointed, leading to what Anna Tsing poignantly describes as “Earth stalked by Man.” Whether termed the Plantationocene, Capitalocene, or Anthropocene, this age of human exceptionalism is defined by a toxic spread of life-diminishing phenomena: ocean acidification, temperature extremes, ecosystem simplification, deforestation, and rampant ecocide. The era of anthropos, or “Man,” shaped by human activity, implies more than an issue of species, but of racial class disparities. Capitalism relies on the unequal exploitation of individuals, often through racial and sexual discrimination, and the one-sided exploitation of natural landscapes, perpetuating itself through a paradigm of plunder. As a result, living forms (human; non-human alike) are robbed of the wealth they generate without any opportunity for replenishment or reciprocity.

In this context, we invite contributions that critically challenge prevailing anthropocentric narratives of nature and that seek to interrogate the relations between life-affirming practices and the natural cycles of decay, decomposition and regeneration. Drawing inspiration from Malcom Ferdinand (2022), we strive for a wordly-ecology(s) “that recognizes that our existence and our bodies are made up of encounters with a plurality of human beings and a plurality of non-human beings” (20). We welcome projects that resonate with the idea that to be alive is to live and produce worlds through/with others. This includes considerations of ecological caregiving, the building of coalitions and kinships, mutual aid, coevolution, mycorrhizal symbiosis, the formation of alliances and solidarity, transversality, and horizontal relational dynamics, among others. Grounded in notions of belonging, permeability, and the ideological transformation of human exceptionalism, our goal is to to create worlds rooted in cooperation and interconnectedness.

In resonance with current trends in feminist scholarship that explore the dynamics between regional and diasporic linkages across the U.S. South and the Global South, including African, Indigenous, Caribbean, Latin American, Middle Eastern, and Asian perspectives on gender and sexuality and their connections to the U.S. South, this invitation for contributions is guided by questions within transcontinental contexts and practical methodologies that have to do with:

  1. Redefining Belonging: How can we redefine belonging to extend beyond human-centric views, fostering a sense of nurturing dwelling with all forms of life?

  2. Shifting Human Exceptionalism: How can concepts like porosity, mixture, and permeability challenge human exceptionalism, as well as reshape our frames of relation with the living world?

  3. Composting “Nature:” How does human egotism shape our perception of nature as an inert, subdued entity? In what manner does the mechanization of life influence our interaction with and experience of the natural world? Is it possible to reimagine and understand nature from a perspective that transcends mechanistic interpretations?

  4. Revitalizing Life-Affirming Relations: How can coalition-building reconfigure life-affirming relationships, reshaping our understanding of humanity and life itself? In what ways can collaborative alliances redefine the dynamics of human interaction and our collective relationship with the broader tapestry of existence?

  5. Reworlding Non-Capitalist Ecologies: How can we cultivate worlds beyond the reach of colonial-extractive capitalism, promoting global-scale mutualisms and cooperation? In a landscape marred by competition, how can ecological care foster interspecies collaboration?

  6. Spirituality: How do spiritual traditions from globally marginalized communities engage with and interpret the environmental crisis? In what ways can the focus on shadow (often neglected or overlooked) aspects within these practices provide distinct and insightful perspectives in the discourse surrounding environmental challenges?

  7. Sensuousness and Decay: How might we reshape our understanding of the connection between life-affirming practices and the natural processes of death, decay, and decomposition, and in what ways do these insights inform our understanding of sensuousness, the erotic, and relationality?

Deadline for submission: March 15, 2024

Email submissions to:

Inquires to Guest Editors: Xalli Zúñiga:

Stephanie Rivera Berruz:

Format: Submissions should be in the range of 5,000-8,000 words (including a 200 word abstract, author bio, and references) and should follow the formatting guidelines: onGuidelines.pdf

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