Comparative Visions of the Apocalypse
Associate Professor Matthew Carey has published a special issue on 'Comparative Visions of the Apocalypse,' in the journal Terrain anthropologie & sciences humaines, featuring an article written by Stine Krøijer, associate professor at the Department of Anthropology, titled 'Undermining life.'
It has almost become a truism to suggest that atomic weapons ushered in a new era in which, for the first time, humanity had to face the possibility of its extinction as a species. The apocalypse they presaged had an immediate and absolute quality. But how then are we to understand the apocalyptic imaginaries of an Amerindian tribe, faced with the possibility of their annihilation? Is their apocalypse somehow less total or merely partial because it only concerns a fraction of humanity rather than its entirety? This special issue argues that the apocalypse is never partial, but always plural. Each apocalypse takes a different object – sometimes a tribe, sometimes humanity, sometimes a civilization – and that each of these objects represents a different moral community constructed (for the purposes of its annihilation) as a necessarily total social and conceptual entity, and potentially subject to erasure. The articles explore the range and diversity of possible apocalypses as well as the worlds they promise to extinguish.
Matthew Carey, Comparative Visions of the Apocalypse, Terrain anthropologie & sciences humaines, Issue 71, April 2019.