Cite as: Xenia Chiaramonte, Introduction to the workshop ‘Legal Imagination for Gaia’, part of the symposium Reducing Climate, ICI Berlin, 10 June 2022, video recording, mp4, 06:56 <>
10 Jun 2022


By Xenia Chiaramonte

Video in English

Format: mp4
Length: 00:06:56
First published on:
Rights: © ICI Berlin

Part of the Workshop

Legal Imagination for Gaia

In the face of climate breakdown, legal discourse is urged to reconsider the relationship between law and nature: What kind of legal imagination is needed for the time of Gaia? Reinstituting nature as the defining category for addressing climate breakdown could prove to be both dangerous and obsolete. The workshop focuses on lateral alternatives to the personification of nature and aims at creating a new ecological imagination of legal techniques. It seeks to develop a tentative lexicon including categories such as species, trans-subjective rights, diffuse interests, ecocide, commons and future generations.


ICI Berlin
(Click for further documentation)

Organized by

Xenia Chiaramonte
Sarath Jakka

Part of the Symposium

Reducing Climate

The notion of reduction is central to the discourse on climate disaster and environmental collapse. A political understanding of climate has led to urgent calls for ever increasing measures aiming at reduction—for example reducing emissions or consumption. Such calls are based on the premise that there can be quantitative remedies to the current environmental disaster. However well-intentioned, earnest, and necessary such approaches are, this symposium would like to pose the provocative question whether the current will for quantitatively defined action against climate breakdown might actually be a symptom of—rather than a solution to—the problem at hand. The attempt to restore nature to a desirable or optimal state seems to be a desire to sublimate, dismiss, or silence the aporias that environmental disaster imposes intellectually, politically, and existentially.

In order to think through the blindspots of the dominant discourse on climate breakdown, the symposium addresses a range of topics including the local dimensions of the climate question, the psychoanalysis of apocalypse, visual representations of ecological disasters, the paradoxes posed by the reliance on scientific authority, the philosophy of climate, and notions of climate debt and climate futures. The symposium features a workshop entitled ‘Legal Imagination for Gaia’ that attempts to develop lateral alternatives to the legal personification of nature. The workshop seeks to create or repurpose legal concepts such as species, trans-subjective rights, diffuse interests, ecocide, and intergenerational justice.


ICI Berlin
(Click for further documentation)


Elizabeth Povinelli
Shekhar Pathak
Alexandra Aragão
Lukas Brasiskis
Pasquale Femia
Emanuela Fronza
Yohan John
Mikhail Lylov
Nicola Manghi
Michael Monterossi
Edward Mussawir
Michael Uebel
Elena Vogman

Organized by

Xenia Chiaramonte
Sarath Jakka
An ICI Event in cooperation with ‘Madness, Media, Milieus. Reconfiguring the Humanities in Postwar Europe’ (Volkswagen Stiftung/ Bauhaus-Universität Weimar)