On his exploratory travels to the New Continent at the turn of 18th to 19th century, Alexander von Humboldt operated within an environment characterized by intense global movement through seafaring and increased trade with the colonies.

We now find similar, yet arguably more virtual conditions of movement driven by the globalized economy. For spatial designers, the easy access to data from their desktop downplays on-site experience and physical moves as a foundation for understanding and developing knowledge about our life world. This is why Humboldt’s mode of practice through in-depth fieldwork, immediate observation and multifaceted communication is more relevant than ever.

Humboldt posited knowledge as dynamic open work, generated by crossing boundaries between disciplines, territories and cultures, acknowledging migrations of humans, animals, plants, continents as the conditio sine qua non for know-how, languages and traditions to evolve. For Ottmar Ette, Humboldt is the earliest theoretician of the globalizing world. He proposes a new dynamic world view, to be apprehended as we move.

Ottmar Ette has been Chair of Romance Literature at the University of Potsdam since 1995 and a visiting professor in various countries of Latin America, USA, Europe and China. In Potsdam he coordinates POINTS Potsdam International Network for Transarea Studies to promote mobile conceptions of spaces and places and to foster transdisciplinary approaches and perspectives. As an internationally acclaimed Humboldt researcher, Ette currently directs the projects "Alexander von Humboldt's American Travel Diaries: Genealogy, Chronology, and Epistemology", and "Travelling Humboldt - Science on the Move" of the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities, of which he is an ordinary member. He has been elected an honorary member of the Modern Language Association (MLA) in 2014, he became fellow at the Institute for Advanced Study in Berlin in 2013, and a member of the Academia Europeae in 2010.

In collaboration with
NOVA University Network

The lecture will be followed by a panel discussion with
Ottmar Ette, professor of Romance literature, University of Potsdam
Gini Lee, professor of landscape architecture, University of Melbourne
Joacim Sprung, assoc. professor of visual culture, University of Lund
Andrea Kahn, adj. professor of site thinking and practice, SLU
Cecil Konijnendijk van den Bosch, professor of landscape planning, SLU
Discussion Chair: Lisa Diedrich, professor of landscape architecture, SLU

TID: Onsdag/Wednesday 26.08 kl. 17-20
Form/Design Center
Ingen kostnad/Free of charge
ARRANGÖR: The Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, SLU
Research programme Future Urban Sustainable Environment FUSE
Department of landscape architecture, planning, and management.
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The lecture will be held in English