Re-Imagining the Future #2

How can we imagine and shape a sustainable future where both humans and nature can thrive?

More than ever before we need narratives that illuminate new ways of living and being. Social imagination, catalyzed by compelling stories, is a key ingredient for a green and just transformation.

Stories that depict the future of humanity from a bleak, dystopian and apocalyptic perspective are omnipresent in literature, films, and other mediums. Considering the multiple crises we are facing – climate breakdown, biodiversity loss, war and social unrest – it is no surprise that many storytellers gravitate towards “doom and gloom” in their portrayal of what is to come.

But what are the alternative narratives? We need to accept that the crisis will not be solved with the same methods and mindsets that created it, not with tech-fixes and electric cars, but instead with a change of attitude, a humility in relation to our place in the great cycle of life. What if the best thing we can do is to do less, give space to and facilitate nature?

The Nordic house invites you to join Pella Thiel, ecologist, and systemic activist, and Shëkufe Tadayoni Heiberg, writer, eco-activist and publisher, in a discussion on human-nature relations, activism, social change and the role of storytelling. Sverrir Norland, author and publisher, will moderate the conversation.

Pella Thiel is a maverick ecologist who works with relational, systemic activism, change processes and leadership for a society in harmony with nature. She is the co-founder of swedish hubs of international networks like Swedish Transition Network, End Ecocide Sweden and Save the Rainforest Sweden and expert in the UN Harmony with Nature initiative. She also teaches ecopsychology and is a part of the eco-psychology/art/activist NGO Lodyn. Pella was awarded the Environmental Hero of the Year in Sweden 2019.

Shëkufe Tadayoni Heiberg (b. 1987) is a persian-danish poet, author and translator. She has a master’s degree in literature science from The University of Copenhagen and runs the danish publishing house Uro. Shëkufe has published both books and translations. Together with Hamid Tadaypni and Morten Søndergård, she recently published the poetry translation “Hafes. Fra vinhus til Paradis” (2022). Shëkufe’s last publication “Nødder” (2022), is a utopian bio-fi novel that questions the status quo about established moon facts and gives new perspectives to both the existence of the moon and the birth of the Earth. Shëkufe’s climate engagement is reflected in her writing. She works to illuminate the relationship between humans and other species, and that we must make space for various forms of life, so we can prevent the worst effects of climate change.

The event will take place in English. It will be both in-person and LIVE-streamed. Light refreshments will be served, and drinks can be purchased at SÓNÓ Matseljur.

This is the second part of the “Re-imagining the Future” conversations. The first one took place in November 2022 and was a dialogue between biologist Skúli Skúlason and Azucena Castro, P.hd. in Spanish and Literature. A recording of the event can be watched here.