"Sedimented stories: Fluvial forces and natural archives in an unstable world" with Alejandro Camargo
Sediments are materials that tell stories about the past. For paleoecologists and paleoclimatologists, for instance, sediments are natural archives which provide information about the climate, environmental dynamics and human activities of past eras. For historians and other social scientists, sediments are a metaphor for understanding the shaping and accumulation of human experience in historical time. But what kind of contemporary human experiences are woven around sediment not as a metaphor but as a material that circulates and accumulates in the landscape and quotidian spaces? What does sediment tell about the past and the future of those subjects whose everyday lives are deeply intertwined with, and often dramatically disrupted by the flux, disintegration and accumulation of this element in fluvial environments? This presentation explores the social life of river forces to understand how sediment can tell stories about people, and how people tell stories about sediment in an increasingly unstable world.
Alejandro Camargo is an assistant professor at the Department of History and Social Sciences at Universidad del Norte in Barranquilla, Colombia. He is a human geographer broadly interested in people-nature relationships in fluvial environments.