An Evolving Exploration into the Head, Heart and Hands of Energy Descent
Transition Culture has moved
After eight years of frenzied blogging at this site, Transition Culture has moved to its new home. Do come and join us, but feel free to also browse this now-archived site and use the shop. Thanks for all your support, comments and input so far, and see you soon.
I was at Hay Festival last week and had the pleasure of spending an hour listening to one of my great heroes, the illustrator, Sir Quentin Blake. His lecture was entitled In and out of the book – the uses of illustration (you can see the transcript of his talk here). The first part of his talk looked at the role of illustration in bringing stories to life and in introducing children to the joys of reading. It was the second half of the talk though which I found most fascinating. He talked about the work he has been doing most recently in hospitals, and the power of illustration to help people in a variety of therapeutic situations and life transitions. It really got me thinking about what role illustration could play in Transition in its widest sense.
The other day I read an excellent piece by Calvin Jones, Professor of Economics at Cardiff Business School (see right) called Technology Cannot Tackle Climate Change. Having argued that, due to a range of issues, economic growth is no longer possible, he writes:
“Faced with these issues it is easy to withdraw into either a belief in an economic growth fairy, or into passive, nihilistic depression. But this is not necessary. Many societies historically have functioned perfectly well without ever-increasing levels of growth and complexity”.
He also wrote “the cognitive dissonance we feel, as GDP figures rise, and we feel ever more tired, stressed and scared, is real, and must be challenged”, rapidly becoming one of my favourite quotes. Given the challenges of condensing complex arguments into short articles, I thought it would be good to have a chat with Calvin. So what follows is either the audio file to listen to while you’re hoovering the stairs, or a transcript of our talk.
Next Thursday (April 18th) at 5pm BST sees a rather special Transition Network/Resilience.org team-up, with a webinar featuring Joanna Macy and Chris Johnstone. Next week I will post details on how you can follow it, for now I wanted to let you know so you can put it in the diary and also have a think about any questions you’d like to ask them. If you have questions please put them as a comment below or tweet them to me at @robintransition. Here’s where it will happen, in this window below, so come back here, or here, on Thursday for the webinar.
What’ll we be discussing in our hour-long chat? Here’s how Joanna and Chris frame the conversation:
I am just back from 3 days in Germany, and great fun it was too. I spoke on Wednesday evening in Bonn at an event organised by Bonn im Wandel (Bonn in Transition) at the University there, and on Thursday evening I was the guest of the Heinrich Böll Foundation in Berlin. I am currently teaching myself to make short films, and here is my first (I’m doing a proper course in 2 weeks). Nothing fancy but hopefully it captures some of the spirit of both events.
Some additional information on what’s going on in the film might be useful…