Environmental Care and the Infrastructure of Indifference: Tanner Lectures on Human Values by Michael Warner
Lecture | March 22 | 4:10-6:15 p.m. | Alumni House, Toll Room
Michael Warner will present a three day lecture series with commentary by Anahid Nersissian, Dale Jamieson, and Jedediah Purdy. This event will be held on March 20, 21, & 22, 2018. The first day's lecture is titled "On the Grid." The second day's lecture is titled "Infrastructure as Ethics." There will be a seminar and discussion by Professor Warner and the commentators on the third day, March 22nd. (The commentators will also offer brief responses to Warners lectures on the first two days.) All days' events are free and open to the public. No tickets required.
Michael Warner received his B.A. from Oral Roberts University in 1979, and two M.A. degrees from the University of Wisconsin-Madison (1981) and The Johns Hopkins University (1983). In 1986, he received his Ph.D. in English from The Johns Hopkins University. Warner joined the Yale University faculty in 2007 and was named the Seymour H. Knox Professor of English and American Studies in 2008. He has also taught at Northwestern and Rutgers Universities.
A prolific author, Warner has written four books, edited six volumes, and contributed many articles to peer-reviewed academic journals. His first book The Letters of the Republic: Publication and the Public Sphere in Eighteenth-Century America (1990) established him as a leading expert in early American literature and print history. His renowned 1999 work in queer theory The Trouble with Normal: Sex, Politics, and the Ethics of Queer Life argued against adopting the goal of normalcy, and more specifically same-sex marriage rights, in gay rights activism. He is currently completing a book on evangelicalism and the public sphere in eighteenth-century America.
About the lecture:
Professor Warners lectures will address the implications of new developments in energy consumption for the original commitments of twentieth-century environmentalism. Climate change calls for ethical attention to our resources and our waste. Yet modern forms of infrastructure, such as the electrical power grid, seem to lie outside the scope of ordinary concern, and even present obliviousness as a condition of modern freedom. Drawing on research in environmental history and American culture from the colonial period to the emergence of electrical modernity, Professor Warners lectures will ask whether the future of sustainability lies in ethics or in engineering.