Nature and Democracy, Dialog. From the left: Heike Vesper, Lukas Bärfuss
Nature and Democracy, Dialog. From the left: Heike Vesper, Lukas Bärfuss | © Daniel Sadrowski, Ruhrtriennale 2022

In a democracy, human dignity is inviolate. But what rights do animals and plants have in a democracy?

About the event

Nature does not obey the rule of law. The separation of powers is alien to it and it is scarcely bothered about the protection of minorities. Freedom and solidarity are human virtues. A democracy is not determined by the survival of the fittest. In a democracy, human dignity is inviolate. But what rights do animals and plants have in a democracy? Which law should prevail: the rule of law or the laws of nature?

What are we talking about when we use the word »nature«? What shapes our image and our understanding of this so-called nature? We can find answers in that great store of human knowledge and experience: literature. Three evenings and three literary journeys through languages, through the centuries, through the continents. Read by the actors Angela Winkler, Sandra Hüller and Sarah Sandeh, accompanied by musicians and put into historical and literary context beforehand by Lukas Bärfuss in conversation with a range of experts, the evenings will approach three pairs of concepts that have shaped our past, concern our present and will determine our future.

Please note: Unfortunately, Klaus Staeck had to cancel his participation in the dialogue with Lukas Bärfuss for health reasons. We are very pleased to be able to win marine biologist Heike Vesper for the topic of nature and democracy.

Heike Vesper is a biologist and heads the marine programme of WWF Germany. She is committed to sustainable fisheries and the reduction of plastic waste. Most recently, her book Wenn wir die Meere retten, retten wir die Welt (If we save the oceans, we save the world) was published by Rowohlt-Verlag. She writes: "The fact that all life comes from the sea and that the oceans are the largest habitat on earth had completely fascinated me since I was a child. I dreamed of being able to breathe under water. The extent of the destruction of nature by fishing and especially overfishing, on the other hand, were shocking. And they still are today. If you want to change entrenched structures, you need a lot of patience. But even if progress towards protecting the oceans is slow, we must never give up - because those who give up have already lost."

 

 

 

Nature and Democracy, Dialogue. From the left: Heike Vesper, Lukas Bärfuss
Nature and Democracy, Dialogue. From the left: Heike Vesper, Lukas Bärfuss | © Daniel Sadrowski, Ruhrtriennale 2022
Nature and Democracy, Dialog. From the left: Heike Vesper, Lukas Bärfuss
Nature and Democracy, Dialog. From the left: Heike Vesper, Lukas Bärfuss | © Daniel Sadrowski, Ruhrtriennale 2022
Nature and Democracy, Reading. Angela Winkler
Nature and Democracy, Reading. Angela Winkler | © Daniel Sadrowski, Ruhrtriennale 2022
Nature and Democracy, Reading. From the left: Angela Winkler, Roland Satterwhite, Valentin Butt.
Nature and Democracy, Reading. From the left: Angela Winkler, Roland Satterwhite, Valentin Butt. | © Daniel Sadrowski, Ruhrtriennale 2022

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