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[Week 5 Discussion] Desert by Anonymous: Part 2 Electric Boogaloo

Submitted by RosaReborn in readingclub

This is the second week of two discussion weeks dedicated to Desert, beginning with section 6 and finishing after section 10.Link to Riot for quick chat discussions.

The text furthered environmental conservationist messages of the first half by elaborating the effects of climate change in cold deserts, urban environments, and indeed even the nature of conservationism itself. It showed that things we think of as disadvantages and can actually be helpful in addressing some ecological concern. So what did you think of the text? Did any of the advice or ideas provided influence the tactics or politics of your own ecological struggle? Do you have predictions of impending social and military conflicts that differ from those given in the text? Can the similarities of local struggle enact global change? Any other thoughts or comments are welcome below.

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RosaReborn wrote

In some senses vagabond plants are, ‘on the other side’; they are living in opposition to the city, yet they are simultaneously part of the overarching urban ecosystem. To see them in isolation without implicitly seeing their links and interactions within the wider community would be foolish (47)

I absolutely love this quote and the metaphor that ecological struggles themselves are too a degree a part of the urban ecosystem. It is important work to make urban areas more wild or less ecologically destructive, but we are still a part of the urban environment and I thought the metaphor was perfect in illustrating the illusions one may have.

The authors notes on slums as both an opposing but integrated urban system was also very intersting. Similar to the integration "weeds" mentioned above but serving instead to urbanize those living outside of cities instead of city dwellers seeking to environmentalize the cities.


ps: I will be away for this weekend until late Sunday evening without internet connection, so this will be my last comment until then. Have fun everyone!