Giving Depth to the Surface – an exercise in the Gaia-graphy of Critical Zones

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Giving Depth to the Surface – an exercise in the Gaia-graphy of Critical Zones application/pdf icon
2017

“Giving Depth to the Surface – an exercise in the Gaia-graphy of Critical Zones" (paper by Alexandra Arènes, Bruno Latour & Jérôme Gaillardet) (accepted by the Anthropocene Review - to be published)

Abstract

Foregrounding the importance of soil and more generally the surface of the Earth —what is now often called the Critical Zone (CZ)— remains very difficult as long as the usual planetary view, familiar since the scientific revolution, is maintained. In this joint effort between a landscape architect, a historian of science and a geochemist, we offer an anamorphosis which allows to shift from a planetary vision of places located in the geographic grid, to a representation of events located in what we call a Gaia-graphic view. We claim that such a view because it gives pride of place to the CZ is much better suited to situate the new actors of the Anthropocene.