“Earth, Sea, Sky” is an international environmental humanities research network
(http://torch.ox.ac.uk/earth-sea-sky). Our central aims are 1. to examine the varied and
contested medieval and early modern approaches to the natural world, and 2. to
consider how this premodern archive resonates with environmental degradation and
global warming in our current moment. In three linked symposia we will focus on each
domain of “Earth, Sea, Sky.”
We commence at Oxford on “Earth,” the most anthropocentric, localized, and thereby
familiar of the domains. We will consider how premodern texts and visual culture
configure earth in proximity to various vantage points: local, regional, and national as
well as theological, cultural, human, non/human, and creaturely. Although growing out
of our home disciplines in English literary studies and art history, we imagine the event
to be an opportunity to reanimate forgotten perspectives – those that have vanished – in
scholarship and conversation that productively traverses disciplinary and period
For “Earth,” we invite workshop participants to dwell on one or more of the following
• Excavating earth (mines, resources, fossil fuels and other energy sources,
• Picturing earth (maps, globes, diagrams)
• Perceiving / Delimiting earth (borders, limits, perspectives)
• Covering earth (urban/rural, vegetation and crops, weather)
• Saving / Leaving earth (preservation, seed banks, travel, transcendence,
The symposium will combine a series of research presentations and three workshops.
Two workshops will focus on the conceptual provocations listed above, the other (which
will run twice so that everyone who wants to attend it can do so) will address the rise of
the Environmental Humanities as a career trajectory and an employment category.
These workshops are organized to give postgraduate and early career researchers the
chance to present work-in-progress and to discuss themes arising from the research
Prospective workshop participants are invited to send an expression of interest
comprising a short statement of current research or practice (300-500 words) and a onepage
CV to firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com by 2nd April.
Workshop leaders may ask each participant to share short papers or presentations that
engage these conceptual provocations; there will also likely be shared reading for them.
If you have any accessibility requirements, please let us know in your expression of
The second and third symposia, “Sea” and “Sky,” will take place in 2020 and 2021 at the
University of California, Davis and the University of British Columbia, respectively. We
aim to build an ongoing research network and to foster opportunities for knowledge
exchange and research collaboration across the three events.