by Daniel Hartley In 1938, Marcel Mauss gave a lecture entitled ‘Une catégorie de l’esprit humain: la notion de personne, celle de “moi”’ (‘A category of the human mind: the notion of person, the notion of “self”’). The lecture traces various historical configurations of the ‘person’, from the strictly delimited tribal ‘role’, through the Roman persona – a mask or character in a dramatic play, as well as a legal subject entitled to the inheritance of an estate – all the way to the modern sense of a ‘moral person’ who is ‘conscious, independent, autonomous, free and responsible’. But
by Daniel Hartley. The Anthropocene is a term geologists have begun using to refer to a new geological epoch, in which the action of humans has had such a dramatic effect upon the Earth’s climate, land, oceans and biosphere that humanity itself must now be considered a geological force in its own right1. Whilst there is some disagreement over when precisely the Anthropocene began, scientists generally date it to the end of the eighteenth century and the beginning of the Industrial Revolution, mainly because of the newly-invented steam engine and the enormous expansion in the use of fossil fuels.