Thursday, February 19, 2009

01:34 - Mitteleuropäische Zeit

Another night in a dimmed Airbus cabin. Our landing in Düsseldorf is still several hours and more than three thousand kilometres away. At this time most flights tend to enter into an atemporal state of common drowsiness, only interrupted by the shrill sound of crying infants and the passing turbulence as we ride the North Atlantic jet-streams towards the east.

With our brief America adventure coming to its end, I must say that it is with renewed enthusiasm that I look to the tasks that lie ahead. Giving my talk at UGA and then presenting my research in New York convinced me that, demoralizing as the post-modern consensus may seem at times, the prospect of a bright emancipating future still has the capacity to inspire. Far from defining “modernity’s end in ecological terms” (as argued by a recent Routledge best-seller), climate change may be the transformative challenge which finally brings humanity out of its adolescence of territorial war, narrowly defined “national interests” and passivity towards the future.

Over the next weeks, I will bring further structure to my doctoral dissertation and continue working on my Potsdam ECPR-paper on technological innovation and planetary solidarity. I will also take the train to Uppsala on a few occasions where I will be instructing my sister on her first driving lessons!

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