CFP: 4S Sydney Open Panel--Time-Scapes of Toxicity

Yeonsil Kang's picture
Dear all 
We are seeking abstract submissions for our open panel at the 4S 2018 conference in Sydney. Call for abstracts is due on Feb. 1, 2018 (You can see the full list of open panels as well as submit your abstract here: Please contact any of the organizers if you have any questions! 
97. Time-Scapes of Toxicity 

Britt Dahlberg (Chemical Heritage Foundation;

Yeonsil Kang (The Catholic University of Korea;

How does time play out in toxicity? While ideas of “the Anthropocene” and “slow disaster” urge consideration of hazards along much longer timeframes, the multiplicity and simultaneity of temporal scales—of humans, natures, and materials such as plastics, pesticides, or radiation—complicate the ways actors and researchers comprehend time within and across polluted sites.

Time-scapes connect with land- and socio-scapes. On the one hand, acknowledgment of toxicity develops at different times in different regions, and industries strategically shift extraction and manufacturing to navigate costs and regulation. On the other hand, human actions bring about new openings and closures to toxicity – for instance, when actors reframe asbestos as a present-day environmental hazard, rather than occupational hazard “of the past” to mobilize attention and intervention.

We welcome papers exploring questions such as: Where in time do actors locate risks, and what work does that do? Where are places located in relation to time-scapes of toxins? In what ways do actors make sense of temporal scales in polluted sites, and work to open and close problems of toxicity? How do temporal boundaries relate to efforts to manage hazards and enact safety? How does temporal locating of risk, shift public priorities or felt experiences of being “at risk” or safe? How do actors and could researchers comprehend a longue durée of hazards? By asking these questions, this panel contributes to the understanding of transnationality of knowledge production, technological inventions and usages, and regulation and activism about hazards – through thinking across temporal and spatial boundaries.