Asia and the Anthropocene (Azija in Antropocen)
Mark J. Hudson
The term “Anthropocene” has been proposed as a label for the era in which human domination of the earth’s ecosystems has turned humanity into a geological process. Particularly in its more recent historical manifestations, the Anthropocene also represents a crisis of sustainability, a period formed through human activities that have already exceeded what scientists have called the “safe operating limits for humanity”. The concepts of the Anthropocene and the global ecological crisis might seem the final nails in the coffin of Asian Studies, a field of area studies that developed for largely geopolitical reasons that had little to do with ecology and the environment. Yet this paper will argue that the Anthropocene gives a new edge to the study of Asia. Three main aspects of this argument will be examined.