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Event | 11 May 2023 17:30-18:30

What to Give Up for the Climate: Asceticism and Ecological Justice

Key Details

Campion Hall
Social Justice

Speaker: Dr Alda Balthrop-Lewis, Senior Research Fellow at the Institute for Religion & Critical Inquiry (Australian Catholic University), and currently Denis Edwards Visiting Fellow at the Laudato Si' Research Institute. 

Format: In person (Campion Hall, Lecture Room) and online (livestream).

About: Environmental politics often asks for our renunciation - for example by reducing waste or driving less. These contemporary forms of asceticism may seem remote from traditional Christian forms, and yet, even religious renunciation has often had political significance. This talk asks about the political significance of asceticism, especially in the work of Henry David Thoreau and Thomas Merton. It argues that Thoreau's nineteenth-century retreat described in Walden was playing on more ancient monastic practices, and that Thomas Merton was an inheritor of this vision of ecological justice. Thoreau and Merton demonstrate the political significance of asceticism in an ecological age, and they offer lessons for contemporary struggles for justice.

How to Attend: Register for free to attend in person or online. A drinks reception will be held after the lecture for in-person attendees.