• Teaching Holistic Eco-Media: The Quadrat as Interface Between the Biosphere and the Bitsphere

    Author(s):
    Kate Maddalena
    Editor(s):
    Kanishka Sikri (see profile)
    Date:
    2022
    Item Type:
    Article
    Permanent URL:
    https://doi.org/10.17613/pm9e-z738
    Abstract:
    In this essay, I describe the tradition of teaching quadrat sampling methods in the environmental sciences in Ursula Franklin’s terms of the essential need for “[education] at the interface of biosphere and bitsphere.” Because field sampling requires embodied training and practice on the part of the forester or scientist, Franklin would call sampling methods like the quadrat a technology at the “interface of the biosphere and the bitsphere” (Franklin, 2008). Like many technologies she describes, they emerged in practice holistically, but can now be seen as being deployed prescriptively. I propose an inventive pedagogy that engages humanities perspectives in environmental science knowledge-making. I consider the quadrat a medium by which other perspectives can reframe what has become a prescriptive technology as a holistic one. Specifically, I describe an undergraduate pilot project in which students read quadrats as poems, and then describe a method by which to map the poetics of a landscape. Such inventive practices “[rattle] the cages of space and time that [confine our] natural existence” (Franklin, 2008) and help us connect to, rather than alienate ourselves from, landscapes through knowledge-making technologies.
    Metadata:
    Published as:
    Online publication    
    Status:
    Published
    Last Updated:
    2 years ago
    License:
    Attribution

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