March 14, 2019 § 2 Comments
It’s a long time since I’ve posted anything, so here’s an update. I spent most of 2017 recovering from a serious illness and major operation but 2018 saw me fully recovered and active once more with various aspects of climate change and psychology.
2018 proved a year in which climate change returned to a small measure of public prominence, prompted in part by the disturbing hot summer which swept across Europe, in part by the increasingly alarming predictions made by scientists and in part by the renewal of political activism in the launch of Extinction Rebellion.
Any serious political change requires a huge broad-based movement however and that in turn requires people to be able to talk about this frightening and distressing subject in ways which help others relinquish the defences they have used to protect themselves from it. In 2018 I returned to running a workshop I first offered back in 2007, ‘Conversations about Climate Change: talking with family, friends and colleagues’. It focuses on the difficulties people so often experience when the subject enters conversation – feeling silenced, pigeon-holed, embarrassed or upset. I ran it for the Scottish Climate Psychology Alliance in April, for ‘Eco-Savvy’ on Arran in June, for the Centre for Alternative Technology’s Members’ Conference in October and for Letchworth Transition group in November.
2018 also saw the publication of the paper I wrote with Paul Hoggett ‘Engaging with Climate Change: Comparing the Cultures of Science and Activism’ which is available here or by emailing me direct.
More recently I’ve been involved with Chris Robertson in facilitating the Climate Psychology Alliance’s ‘Through the Door’ workshops for therapists and counsellors who want to bring their skills to the climate movement. I was also very pleased to be invited to deliver one of the lectures in this year’s Cambridge Climate Lecture Series. It was a big departure for CCLS to include something other than science in the series and I was delighted to be made so welcome. My title was ‘Climate, Psychology, Conversation: the unconscious dynamics of how we talk about climate change’ and you can view the lecture here. Even more enjoyable was the accompanying workshop which I ran for Sixth-Formers called ‘Finding your Voice’ about climate change.
I’m hoping I can offer both these workshops to more audiences in the future.