The Anthropocene has sparked intense and ongoing debate over the past decade. From seemingly diverse disciplines such as climatology, geology, philosophy and the visual arts, researchers set out to reflect on the new epoch of the Anthropocene. This means pursuing various avenues of measurement, criticism, and reflection on the origins of the Anthropocene, its present character, and the kind of future it predicts. While geological evidence is still debated to formally assert the existence of the Anthropocene, a large body of science has recently emerged that accepts its general premise – that humans are geological agents – and tries to understand how and why this matters. . Since the Anthropocene taught us the earth sciences, it also reflects a return to humanity. At a fundamental level, it interferes with intellectual and psychological conceptions of who we are as human beings and our relationship to the world around us.
The term of the Athropocene is actually a matter of age on a geological scale, the time when humans moved from the Holesen. As defined by the creator of the term, the Anthropocene is an era in which humans are more powerful than nature. Paul Crutzen who first invented this in his book Anthropocene: A New Epoch in Earth’s History, and also in other words Jason Moore in his article explaining the significance of the Anthropocene actually has two purposes, the first Anthropocene is interpreted as a scientific concept and an object in geological science, the second meaning is an idea that questions the truth and authenticity of the natural sciences. The anthropocene in this second term questions the relationships between humans and non-humans. Additionally, Anthropocene is a term that connects the natural sciences and the social sciences.
The Anthropocene is in fact a human crisis, with each crisis paving the way for a new state of stability. The anthropocene crisis is an ecological crisis and the ecological crisis is not something that happened suddenly, nor can it be suddenly corrected either. Since Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring essay in 1962, the environmental crisis has become the most obvious crisis facing humanity. He says humans are rapidly approaching many limits of what the biosphere and ecosystems tolerate.
Covid and the Anthropocene
One of the signs that we have entered the period of the Anthropocene is the emergence of many new zoonoses. Although in the 2016 UNEP border report it was stated that environmental degradation and global warming would lead to the emergence of many zoonoses every four months, that could of course change faster. Zoonotic diseases in the crude sense are diseases that originate in animals and which, with a certain process and duration, can infect humans through an intermediary (carrier host), which will then cause health problems. to humans and even death.
During the last decades, many zoonotic diseases have appeared, AIDS, anthrax, Ebola and malaria are zoonotic diseases which have affected several regions of the world. At least 60% of the 335 diseases that appeared between 1960 and 2004 were animal diseases. Until 2002 to 2012, two types of epidemics had been reported, in 2002, SARS appeared in Guandong province, China, and caused the death of 800 people, or 10% of the number of people affected. After the SARS disease disappeared, MERS disease appeared in Saudi Arabia. Until the end of 2019, a new virus reappeared in China which subsequently became a pandemic, called Covid 19. So far it has not been totaled and it is estimated when it will really subside, as several countries are still fighting against it. The three viruses (SARS, MERS and Covid 19 or n-Cov) are viruses of the same type, namely the Corona virus which often causes coughs and colds.
Although there is debate and research is still being done to this day, one of the articles published by Cristina O’Callaghan-Gordo and Joseph M. Anto titled Covid-19: The Disease of Anthropocene, concluded that Covid-19 is a disease it is the anthropocene disease. This is indicated by the finding that the covid 19 virus was produced from the transmission of changes in the DNA / RNA structure of the virus that occurred due to environmental damage and human economic activities.
Covid 19 has more or less changed the world over the past two years, so far, although several countries around the world have been released from Covid 19 emergency status, several other countries are still recovering, and more parties still in difficulty. Covid 19 not only causes epidemics and is the cause of death for many people around the world, but Covid 19 is also ravaging the global economy. Its presence is considered one of the typical diseases of the Anthropocene era. This is because Covid 19 is believed to be the result of human superiority over existing natural resources, which then leads to an imbalance in nature (virus growth) which further causes the imbalance and development of diseases and viruses. About how and in detail this happened, several scientists in the field of virology and the environment explained in their own language.
IR Studies and International Relations
So far, it has remained largely absent from the analysis of international relations (IR). This is confusing given the monumental stakes involved in tackling planetary change and the discipline’s main emphasis on crises. This silence may exist, however, as contemporary studies of international relations are disrupted by the Anthropocene, which alters basic assumptions about how humans live in the midst of danger, danger and risk. perpetual. Since the end of World War II and the onset of the Cold War, dramatic man-made changes in the functioning of earth systems have occurred.
International relations have yet to successfully engage the challenge of the Anthropocene, with the abundance of emerging information showing the scale and type of impact humans have on the world, this is no longer lasting. For the above reason, international relations must reconsider some of its fundamental understandings, particularly the relationship between normative categories of humanity, change, but also through the emerging awareness of anthropocene entanglement. As Morgenthau said, the “struggle for power and peace” will not go away once the International Commission on Stratigraphy renders its verdict as to whether we are now, officially, in the days of the Anthropocene. . However, if international relations remained attached to Holocene thought, defined most sharply as the separation of man from the world, it would be disastrous; both by reflex and for the world. Moreover, the Anthropocene discussed in international relations was strongly influenced by post-humanist and materialist schools of thought, after which it became a general tendency to reject the destruction of nature. Regardless of mutual commitment.
In his article, Cameron Harrington proves that the natural / cultural divide at the heart of the liberal Enlightenment project is wrong. The Anthropocene also got rid of liberal aspirations of progress and promises of protection, even on the contrary, the Anthropocene promoted the policy of adaptation of resilience which is a post-political form, where man stops to transform living conditions and must survive with what is.
The Anthropocene represents the potential failure of modern human societies to preserve and sustain themselves and other forms of life. All of this also reflects the failure of the international relations hypothesis to think of a different world; not in the utopian sense of building a perfect political community, but in thinking about the realization that we exist in a world much more complex, interactive and diverse than ever imagined in international relations. The discipline of international relations can no longer deny these interconnected risks, threats and physical effects, nor maintain an outdated image of a world built on a clear separation of people, nations and global systems. Given its claim to “global” research, international relations are no longer just a sub-discipline of political and economic sciences, but also of geophysics. Discussing the different ways in which the Anthropocene and international relations can coexist is no easy task.
International relations have indeed made many contributions from the research of the difficulties of building an effective environmental regime to the obscure role of climate change in conflict, however, the lack of international relations in contributing to the Anthropocene debate suggests something. more complex and disturbing thing, namely myopia tendencies. seeing people, nature and security as divisible layers that meet instrumentally. These views reflect the past forms of modernism and materialism, which have contributed to the crisis of humanity today.
Therefore, the task of international relations scientists will become even more difficult in the years to come. Given its history of representing the uneven global process of modern politics, international relations seem well placed to engage the Anthropocene, which emerged directly from this process. Additionally, IR’s commitment to tragedy as a political center is reflected in the “apocalyptic tone” that prevails in anthropocene studies. However, the Anthropocene also presented “mundane” problems to international relations. This has forced international relations to reflect on what is called mass murder: the danger and the potential end of the world. Such thinking is inherently complex and requires a broader and deeper level of ecological thinking than we see today.
The presence of Covid-19 is an alarm to humans that humans are currently no longer in the Holocene period, but have moved into the Anthropocene period, a time when humans are so powerful towards nature that they produce a lasting impact. and serious that cannot be fixed in a short time. The study of international relations in the Holocene era separated humans, society and nature. However, the Anthropocene is a period of connection and interaction between the social and the non-social. The natural sciences and the social sciences are interconnected. Social interaction and nature become objects that cause each other. However, international relations have contributed a lot and taught studies on human security, cooperation and many other things. What needs to be emphasized is that in this Anthropocene era, international relations must work hard to regenerate assumptions and theories that will and have been obsolete.