Symposium at York brings together scholars whose work is influenced by the sea


An interdisciplinary symposium presented by the Faculty of Education and Founders College at York will bring together scholars whose work is variously touched by the sea.

Pedagogies of the Sea takes place Nov. 20 and will explore a range of themes including:

  • the sea as traumatic rupture and transformational change, confinement and freedom;
  • the sea as ecology in a time of climate change and 'blue economies';
  • what it means to think about the affect of the 'forms and forces' of the sea;
  • what pedagogical lessons may be drawn from the sea to think beyond the sea.

The one-day symposium will include morning presentations and an afternoon keynote by Isabel Hofmeyr from WITS University, South Africa.

Sunset over rough water of Baltic Sea seen from a tourist boat in Leba town, Poland

Presentations | 9:30 a.m. - 2:45 p.m.

Othon Alexandrakis, Katherine Anderson, Tyler Ball, Arun Chaudhuri, Andrea Davis, Ken Little, Andrea Madovarski, Patrick Taylor, Sandra Widmer, Anna Zalik, Rinaldo Walcott, Yutaka Yoshida

Convener: Daniel Yon

Keynote Speaker | 3:00 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Isabel Hormeyr

Pedagogies of the Sea: hydrocolonial perspectives with keynote speaker Isabel Hofmeyr (WITS University, Johannesburg, South Africa and Global Distinguished Professor, New York University, USA)

Rising sea levels have shifted the ways in which we do oceanic studies. Whereas older styles of oceanic histories treated the sea as surface and backdrop for human movement at sea, a new oceanic studies seeks to engage with the materiality of the ocean, attempting analytically to go off shore and below the water line. This scholarship seeks to make visible the deep-seated land- and human-orientations of much research. Terming these “dry technologies”, this work seeks to “immerse” concepts and theories to produce new modes of analysis. Using the rubric of hydrocolonialism, this talk will outline a range of emerging methods and techniques, exploring how these might be employed as pedagogies of the sea.

Event co-sponsors include the Office of the Vice-President Research, the Faculty of Environmental Studies, and the departments of Anthropology and Humanities.

The symposium runs in Room 305 Founders College and is open to all. For more information including descriptions of the morning presentations, view the symposium program.