Summary of Candis Callison, “The 12 Year Window: Locating Crisis, Climate Change, and Colonialism”

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00:00:00 - 00:40:00

Callison discusses how climate change is not a new ecological disaster, but instead is a result of centuries of colonialism. She suggests that our understanding of climate change must be framed in terms of indigenous worldviews, which are often ignored in scientific research.

  • 00:00:00 Candis Callison will be discussing the 12-year window, locating crisis, climate change, and colonialism. She emphasizes the importance of indigenous protocol of acknowledging traditional territory, as well as the substantive nature of these topics. Climate change is viewed as a global problem with impacts that extend beyond the U.S. Candis encourages everyone to continue to ask questions and be critical thinkers.
  • 00:05:00 Candis Callison discusses how the media, scientists, and social movements must frame climate change as a crisis in order to mobilize people to take action. She cites the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's 2018 report that states that we have only 12 years to make major progress on climate change.
  • 00:10:00 Candis Callison's 12 Year Window lecture looks at how public engagement around climate change has evolved over time, highlighting the importance of indigenous knowledge and voices. She also discusses how colonialism and settlerism play a role in how crises around climate change are framed and responded to. Finally, she offers some thoughts on how to talk about climate change in a way that includes all perspectives and avoids perpetuating dominant narratives.
  • 00:15:00 Candis Callison, in her book "The 12 Year Window: Locating Crisis, Climate Change, and Colonialism", discusses the challenges journalists face when covering climate change, specifically the need to communicate science in a way that is both accurate and understandable to a public skeptical of or in denial of climate change. She argues that journalists need to be aware of the changing media landscape and the ways in which public engagement with climate change has changed in recent years.
  • 00:20:00 Candis Callison discusses how climate change is not a new ecological disaster, but instead is a result of centuries of colonialism. She suggests that our understanding of climate change must be framed in terms of indigenous worldviews, which are often ignored in scientific research. Kyle Palace White and Deborah McGregor argue that the genocides accompanying the European colonization of the Americas are not just a matter of human deaths, but also of deaths of non-human animals and plants.
  • 00:25:00 Candis Callison discusses the concept of "settler colonialism," which she defines as a form of colonialism where settlers come and stay in a society, enacting processes and structures that continue to govern that society. She argues that the Anthropocene, or the current epoch in which humans have had a significant impact on the environment, should be conceived of as having its origins with colonialism. This concept has important implications for understanding climate change, as it reflects colonial logics that erase difference and involve brutal force, often building on the work of Kyle White. Indigenous communities in North America often have mental models for assessing change, which are embedded in diverse traditional stories about how things have always been, how things change, and what it means when things go wrong. However, climate change makes these relationships more visible, but it's currently lacking a discourse that takes into account the historical structural and epistemological context of environmental factors.
  • 00:30:00 Candis Callison discusses how scientific facts are co-constituted and co-produced with social orders and cultural and political context. She argues that the turn to a 12-year window and to the Anthropocene are not dissimilar in this sense. The Anthropocene disturbs the certainty of scientific facts by bringing the geological into the everyday. Following robbing scientific evidence of its power to stabilize the earth, indigenous scholars might arrive at a quite different response.
  • 00:35:00 Candis Callison, a citizen Potawatomi biologist, discusses the responsibilities between humans and nonhumans, and how this affects the stability of societies. Colonialism and its impacts on the environment are discussed, and how climate change is connected to these historical events. This is a challenging topic to cover, as it requires a comprehensive understanding of history and ecology.
  • 00:40:00 University College London researchers estimate that European settlers killed 56 million indigenous people over 100 years, causing large swathes of farmland to be abandoned and reforested. They believe genocide is a word that should be spoken about because there is evidence of the impact of this destruction on lands and scientific conclusions about the impact of humans on lands. In contrast, Indian Country Today editor Mark Jahan writes that the destruction of the indigenous world has been chronicled ever since Bartolome de las Casas wrote a short account of this destruction of the Indies in 1552. He even described more than 30 other islands in the vicinity of San Juan that are for the most part and for the same reason depopulated and the landlady waste on these islands. He estimates there are 21 hundred leagues of land that have been ruined and depopulated empty of people. Climate change has become yet another layer on top of existing crises, geopolitical maneuvering, and particular experiences with colonialism that Inuit leaders and communities have to navigate in order to have their concerns heard in policy adaptation planning and scientific research forums. Scientific findings are situated within historicize experiences with colonialism, and climate change is relational within a relational and historical framework not unlike the IPCC report this morning that I began with. These conversations provide a

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