November 5, 2020
Join Sandra Goldmark, Barnard professor and author of Fixation: How to Have Stuff without Breaking the Planet, for a quarantine-tour of her home.
Here’s an excerpt from the book:
“We know that as humans, we need stuff; we are deeply entangled with it. And we know that stuff can be a good thing, or at least that some stuff is better than other stuff. The caveat is that, as with food, there can be too much of a good thing. The surfeit of unhealthy stuff calories in our lives doesn’t only create clutter, or pollution. It helps to deﬁne who we are, as individuals and as a society: our stuff tells a story. As a result of a variety of inﬂuences, both external and internal, our shared story has become one of excess and of being overwhelmed, or heedlessly consuming and exploiting; but we are beginning to ﬁnd ways out of all the mess and toward a simpler narrative, a healthier “stuff culture” that tells a story of balance and joy.
By learning to see our stuff not as passive, voiceless objects but as an active, contributing part of the story, we can consciously use our stuff to change the meaning of the tales we live. In our homes, we each design a real-life theatre set around ourselves, and we act out our lives on our little stage every day. We may be living a narrative of clutter or hoarding but want to shift to one of tidiness and joy. Or we may have an apartment that looks perfectly good, but where the practices of making our clothes and furniture are toxic to people and the planet alike. By learning how our stuff can shape our world, onstage and off, we can begin to design and live a better story, individually and collectively.”
Date: Thursday, November 12, 2020
Time: 6:30 PM – 8:00 PM EST