Defiant Terrains

International Conference at the University of Copenhagen.

The Anthropocene demands reconsidering notions of space. Due to anthropogenic atmospheric force, planet earth and its earth system have become an ever more dynamic, dangerous, and weird terrain.

The planet we live on today and the atmosphere we live through are conceived as fragile and precarious, but also as hostile, inhabitable, and indifferent to all life, resisting human conquest and meaning making. How do media and the arts narrate, think, and form the disorienting and defiant terrains of the Anthropocene? And how do they affect cultural thinking? What is their potential to reconfigure imaginations of being human as parts of material worlds and history, and to think beyond the human?

Attendance is open for all.


  • Auður Aðalsteinsdóttir
  • Debjani Bhattarcharyya
  • Sébastien Fanzun
  • Stefanie Heine
  • Reinhard Hennig
  • Daniel Illger
  • Isabel Karremann
  • Christine Lötscher
  • Ashoka Vardhan Manchala
  • Anna Estera Mrozewicz
  • Lilian Munk Rösing
  • Nicola Thomas
  • Rahel Villinger
  • Oliver Völker



September 7, 2023

Evening Event, September 7, kl. 17: Reading and Roundtable Discussion with Jonas Eika and Daniela Seel at LiteraturHaus (Møllegade 7, 2200 København).

09:30 Welcome and Introduction by Stefanie Heine and Christine Lötscher
10:00 Isabel Karremann, “Robinson’s Island of Despair: The Defiant Terrain as Taskscape”
10:30 Coffee break
11:00 Debjani Bhattarcharyya, “Disappearing Island: Legal Experiments and Humanitarian Futures in the Indian Ocean”
11:30 Auður Aðalsteinsdóttir, “Deep Anxiety: Sunken Territories in 21st Century Icelandic Literature” 
12:00 Lunch break
13:30 Oliver Völker, “Fog, Breath, Atmosphere: Disorientation in Gernot Böhme’s Aesthetics and Jacob Kirkegaard’s Installation Melt”
14:00 Anna Estera Mrozewicz, “From Luminous Landscapes to Toxic Viscosity: ‘Natural” Light in Scandinavian Eco-noir”
14:30 Coffee break
15:00 Lilian Munk Rösing, “Caspar David Friedrich’s Inaccessible Landscapes”
15:30 Sébastien Fanzun, “Behind the Anthroposcene: Tracing the Backstage Sublime”
17:00 Reading and Roundtable Discussion with Jonas Eika and Daniela Seel at LiteraturHaus (Møllegade 7, 2200 København)
19:00 Dinner

September 8, 2023

09:30 Reinhard Hennig, “The Anthropocene Chronotope: Time and Place in Charlotte Weitze’s Den afskyelige and in Christian Byskov’s Græsset”
10:00 Nicola Thomas, “The Eighth Continent: German Space Poetry in the Anthropocene”
10:30 Coffee break
11:00 Rahel Villinger, “Landscapes as Force Fields: On a different Idea of Writing after Nature”
11: 30 Stefanie Heine, “Tangential Terrains: Cormac McCarthy’s Geoaesthetics”
12-13:30 Lunch break
13:30 Christine Lötscher, “Serial Gas Stations. A Petrocultural Analysis”
14:00 Ashoka Vardhan Manchala, “Extracting Coal in Hyderabad: Making of a Political and Economic Resource, c. 1871-1948”
14:30 Coffee break
15:00 Daniel Illger, “The Worlds After: Video Games and the Re-Creation of Nature” 
15:30 Concluding discussion
16:00 End of the conference