Welcome to this blog, Accounting for Atmosphere.

This project is one among multiple possible takes on the anthropological stakes of climate change. It is initiated and run by Jerome Whitington, but the objective is to build a collaborative project appropriate to the challenge of understanding something as complex as climate change. Accounting for Atmosphere is also the provisional title for the research project, just getting underway, that I plan to form the basis of a couple years of work and publishing. Of course the project doesn’t attempt to specify the total anthropological significance of climate change. Rather, the objective is to approach climate change with enough specificity that precise empirical statements can be linked with the broad significance of climate change’s global scope and geo-historical timescales.

Over the next week or two I will be publishing the groundwork for what I hope to be a collaborative approach. This groundwork is the result of several months of my teaching, reading and thinking about different possible ways to approach climate change. However – and this is the reason for now beginning a blog – that work has resulted in decisions that need to be documented and shared, but at the same time moving forward will necessarily involve collaboration, public thinking, and hopefully conjoint research.

Blogs seem to offer an efficient form for this kind of work, partly because they invite collaborative discussion. Second, a blog entry contains a discrete thought or set of thoughts that can be parsed out on its own terms, as it were separate from the detail of other posts. The blog is not meant to replace other forms of anthropological writing, but rather to complement them with its own temporal structure – a kind of public notebook for research and analysis in process.

Thanks for reading.