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THE 2022 FESTIVAL OF SOCIAL SCIENCE
22 October - 13 November
FoSS and ESRC logos

‘Everyday Stories of Climate Change’ A comic!

The title of the event: Everyday stories of Climate Change with a group of characters from the comic pictured beneath

What’s on offer?

10-minute presentation (one every hour) in person by Dr Gemma Sou about the comic and the research on small-scale everyday impacts of climate change on low-income families in the five countries.

Q and A session with the audience after each presentation

There will be free copies of the comic available for the audience!

The aim of this event is to highlight the everyday “mundane” impacts of climate change on low-income people across the world. Shining a light on the everyday impacts of climate change is important because when the media and public and even scientists talk about climate change, they often use abstract ideas such as, ‘The planet is warming’, ‘Global sea levels are rising’ or ‘Rainfall is becoming more unpredictable’. Yet, we hear less about what these changes mean for the everyday lives of ‘ordinary’ families living with climate change. In the comic, readers will travel across four continents and explore the often hidden and everyday ways that low-income families experience climate change, and their strategies to adapt and recover.

What’s it about?

The ‘Everyday Stories of Climate Change’ comic is a world’s first! It is based on the research by Dr Gemma Sou (University of Manchester), Dr Gina Ziervogel (University of Cape Town), and Dr Adeeba Risha (BRAC  University Bangladesh). The comic tells stories about how low-income families experience and adapt to climate change in five countries across four continents. The families’ stories are threaded together to form one global story of everyday life with climate change.

In Bangladesh, you will learn how sea-level rise is impacting women’s domestic duties. From there you will head to South Africa where drought is experienced differently based on a person’s race, linked to the country’s apartheid history. Next, you will cross the Atlantic Ocean to Bolivia and discover how migration allows families to adapt to climate change, but that separation of family members can also strain relationships. Your fourth stop is Puerto Rico where food security is an issue after hurricane Maria. The final destination is the tiny Caribbean Island, Barbuda, where people are collectively resisting disaster capitalists after hurricane Irma.

 The characters are fictionalised, but their stories reflect the main experiences of the people we spoke to during our research. We wanted to shine a light on the overlooked and ‘mundane’ challenges that low-income people face when they are left to shoulder much of the responsibility for adapting to climate change and recovering from the impacts. We aimed to bring through the personalities, humour, voices, and identities of people because the media often homogenise people into groups such as ‘climate victims’ or ‘poor people’.

Who’s leading the event?

Dr Gemma Sou, University of Manchester

Open to

Everyone

Of particular interest to

People with an interest in climate change and / or comics