Published 04 November 2019
Multispecies justice is a field in the making. Over the last year, the Multispecies Justice collective at the University of Sydney, supported by the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, the Sydney Environment Institute, and SSSHARC, has been dedicated to nurturing and exploring this new field.
2019 Symposia Video Recordings
Our 2019 conference, Thinking and Enacting Justice in a Multispecies World, was held from 12 – 20 June 2019. Featuring four distinct symposia, the conference considered the moral, legal and political status of humans and more-than-human beings; the intersection between multispecies justice and climate justice; asked what economic justice would entail in a multispecies world; and reflected on extinction and biocultural-diversity.
Each of the four symposia were recorded and this week we are delighted to share the fruits of these discussions with the wider community, via the Sydney Environment Institute YouTube channel:
These symposia were spaces for imagining new worlds for, and relationships between the human and more-than-human, for grappling with the challenge of forging more fertile collaborations across disciplines, including between the humanities, social sciences and natural sciences, and for exploring what type of institutional transformations might achieve justice in a multispecies world. These conversations are continuing in 2020 through a number of different workshops, events, publications and projects emerging from the multispecies justice collective.In 2019, the Multispecies Justice project also hosted two Sydney Ideas events with panels comprising University of Sydney academics, along with visiting domestic and international scholars, both of which were packed, indicative of the vital interest in this area. These large scale public events allowed those beyond the bounds of the university to explore emerging understandings of multispecies justice, so that we might create a wider discourse about what multispecies justice means out in the world. In this same vein, we have worked with the Sydney Environment Institute to coordinate a series of blogs from academics within the multispecies justice collective to communicate their ideas to a wider audience.
With a view to the future, the multispecies justice team has also focused on how best to nurture the scholarship of early career researchers and students working in this space, to help foster the next iteration of multispecies justice conversations. In tandem with the four symposia, we also hosted a Ph.D. symposium, bringing together PhD candidates both within and beyond the university to work with team members from the multispecies justice collective to develop their ideas, work through problems and to contribute to the development of the multispecies justice field. We have also hosted a multispecies justice HDR reading group within the University of Sydney that has engaged students in multispecies justice conversations across multiple disciplines. Looking forward, in February 2020 we will be hosting a Multispecies Justice HDR retreat, stepping outside the academic walls and bringing the multispecies into multispecies justice conversations.
There is both an urgency and a joy to this work; an urgency given the crises of injustice and violence; a joy in the prospect that we might discover ways of thinking and living more justly amongst all earth beings.