An Anthropocene journey: Walking as embodied research

Nick Shepherd, Christian Ernsten

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterAcademic


This chapter explores the craft of walking as a form of embodied research practice situated at the intersection between artistic research practices and forms of empirical research. Drawing from the authors’ experience in running walking seminars in Cape Town, Amsterdam, and Berlin involving scholars, artists, curators, and activists, it examines the conceptual basis of walking as embodied research via three broad sets of ideas. The first of these is a desire to escape the “white cube” of the seminar room, and to challenge body/mind dichotomies, driven by arguments in feminist theory and decolonial thinking. The second is an interest in notions of landscape as palimpsest, and an interest in questions of history, memory, and representation via a “history of fragments”. The third is contemporary debates on the Anthropocene, and an interest in what it means to think and practice from within the climate crisis. A rich body of artistic work has explored and worked with various walking-based methodologies. For scholars, such methods are potentially more challenging but no less productive.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationRoutledge Handbook of Art, Science, and Technology Studies
EditorsHannah Star Rogers, Megan K. Halpern, Kathryn de Ridder-Vignone, Dehlia Hannah
Place of PublicationLondon
Number of pages14
ISBN (Electronic)9780429437069
ISBN (Print)9781138347304
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2021


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