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A World in a Shell: Research Seminar on Multispecies Studies with Thom van Dooren



In this time of extinctions, the humble snail rarely gets a mention. And yet snails are disappearing faster than any other species. This talk will draw on my forthcoming book on the extinct and endangered lands snails of Hawai‘i, a place once particularly rich in gastropod life, to explore the work of multispecies studies. It will outline what I take to be the core practices and commitments of this field with a particular emphasis on the relevance of multispecies storytelling in understanding and responding to a time of escalating extinctions.

Thom van Dooren is Deputy Director at the Sydney Environment Institute and an Associate Professor in the School of Philosophical and Historical Inquiry at the University of Sydney, and a Professor II in the Oslo School of Environmental Humanities at the University of Oslo. His research and writing focus on some of the many philosophical, ethical, cultural, and political issues that arise in the context of species extinctions and human entanglements with threatened species and places. He is the author of Flight Ways: Life and Loss at the Edge of Extinction (Columbia UP 2014), The Wake of Crows: Living and Dying in Shared Worlds (Columbia UP 2019), and A World in a Shell: Snail Stories for a Time of Extinctions (MIT 2022).




  • Global South Studies Center (GSSC)
  • Multidisciplinary Environmental Studies in the Humanities (MESH)

International House
University of Cologne
Kringsweg 6
50931 Köln

please register by June 6, 2022 at