Anticipatory Cattle Grid
In this paper we show how a seemingly unremarkable object—a cattle grid—has come to presence climate change in partial and contingent ways on the Lizard Peninsula, Cornwall, UK. We identify the cattle grid as an “anticipatory object” through which conservation organizations seek to manage the future and adapt to climate change, but which at the same time presences that unthought-of future for others in the landscape. We explore the ways in which the cattle grid acts to presence something that is not only absent—climate change—but has uncertain imminence. We investigate the ways in which the cattle grid make climate relevant as an embodied and experiential process, a physical and intellectual artifact, and the means to imagine climate and the ways it might change. Drawing upon interpretative approaches informed by theorizations of materiality, presence and absence to understand climate change as a social phenomenon, we go beyond a consideration of this ordinary object defined by its function to consider how the object is experienced, the processes and practices through which people relate to it, and the ways in which social meaning accumulates around it.
[Professor] Catherine [Leyshon, co-author of the article abstracted above] likes to run and she completed three half marathons and several other races in 2011, proudly finishing in the 80th percentile in every race. But at least she finished. When she is not running, Catherine enjoys baking cakes. Her particular specialisms are chocolate macaroons and banana bread. She also likes baking bread, making jam, and trying new recipes. Catherine likes to read restaruant [sic] reviews, cookbooks and novels. Whilst crashing the pans together in the kitchen, Catherine listens to BBC Radio 5‘s coverage of football matches but can never remember who‘s playing or what the score is. Catherine is especially vigilant about the misuse of apostrophies [sic], having been converted to their proper use in her twenties.