Spinoza in the Anthropocene
Beth Lord in conversation with Chris Meyns
What can the early modern philosopher Baruch Spinoza contribute to our thinking about the climate crisis, and specifically, our thinking about the emotions generated by it? For Spinoza, that which increases human action and thinking is good: on this definition, deriving energy from fossil fuels has been a very great human good over the past 400 years. But we now understand our reliance on fossil fuels to be bad for our flourishing and that of other forms of life on earth. We can no longer rejoice in the consideration of collective human power: instead, we now fear its devastating predicted effects. What are the implications of this fear of our own power? What confusions does this fear emerge from? And how can we correct and clarify our emotional response to the climate crisis?
This event is organized in collaboration with Cafe Culture North East.
Beth Lord is a philosopher at the University of Aberdeen specialising in the history of philosophy, especially the work and influence of Immanuel Kant and Baruch Spinoza, and contemporary Continental philosophy. @ProfBethLord
Chris Meyns is a philosopher and historian of science based at Uppsala University. They regularly write, give talks in places worldwide, and organize events. chrismeyns.xyz