We As Nature With Environmental Anthropologist Lydia Gibson
We As Nature is a monthly online gathering harnessing the power of personal storytelling to deepen connections with nature.
1pm – 2pm GMT • Free to join • A chance to relax, listen and meet others
This month we are delighted to have environmental anthropologist Lydia Gibson joining us as the We As Nature storyteller.
After years of teaching in London, Lydia came to see that her efforts needed to be redirected and that for a plant to bear fruit, it’s essential to heal the root. Leaving her teaching job, Lydia set out to understand what was needed for diasporic Black and Caribbean communities to connect to their heritage and culture. She had a hunch that it had something to do with place. Her journey led her to the forests of Jamaica where, through the intricacies of participant research, she found herself tangled in the lessons of duty, reciprocity, and the complexities of community.
Lydia’s story will explore the fruits of the relationships born of re-rooting. It is not a glorified tale, but rather one that tells her story of connecting to Jamaica’s Maroon Peoples and, in particular, the parrot hunters who led her deep into the forest and shared their lives, food, and ways. Touching on connecting to place, finding bravery, complicated relationships, and commitments that go beyond earthly rewards, we hope you’ll join us for a truly unique sharing.
Lydia Gibson is an environmental anthropologist working at the intersection of anthropology and ecology to understand how forest ecosystems and resource use are co-constituted within traditional, forest-based, Maroon communities. Largely, this involves exploring traditional parrot hunting and the matrices of indigenous knowledge and technopolitical arrangements that comprise its ritual and customary practice. Lydia also works at the interface of political imaginaries, discursive realities, and technical entanglements of human-material relations within environmental responses. Lydia is engaged in a number of conservation and ethnographic projects in the unnamed Maroon village and is an IUCN Species Specialist Commission member (Birds). Lydia’s co-edited current book project The Ethics of Participation (Routledge, under contract) thinks through the consequences of all types of engagements with local communities, particularly in contested spaces.
About We As Nature
Each month, a new storyteller joins the We As Nature gathering to share their unique experience of how learning from and listening to diverse forms of life has altered their course.
Following their 20-minute story, participants are invited to stay and connect with 2-3 other attendees in a breakout room to share reflections and sparks of inspiration. We see this as an opportunity for spontaneous conversations to arise – just as they might at in-person events!
This simple yet profound event offers a space to listen, engage in dialogue and envision possibilities for moving towards a flourishing world.