The Unsustainable Self | Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design, Jerusalem

The Unsustainable Self

Total Hours
Semester A
Course Day
Time 10:30 - 12:00

The climate crisis has been defined by the UN as the most serious threat to the future of humanity. Current approaches aimed to address this threat stress the need to limit and make a better use of natural resources as well as educate about sustainable consumption. Yet such approaches overlook a crucial question: how did we get to a situation of over-exploitation of resources and to an acute disruption of world order from the first place? The answer suggested in the seminar is that the Enlightenment project has brought about a break between man and nature that led to a constitution of a subject craving for more than she or he needs - an unsustainable self. We will explore the option that addressing the challenge calls for a rethinking of a fundamental dimension of human-nature relations and that public indifference in relation to the crisis calls the very notion of the modern self in question. We will read various thinkers who delt with the question of the formation of the self and its (us)sustainability from the times of Enlightenment until the present.