This article focuses on the animated Japanese film Weathering with You (2019) in order to think critically about the limits and merits of site-specific, local approaches to the anthropogenic climate crisis, and to the Anthropocene and its mythopoetic tendency. While the geological period of the Anthropocene is thoroughly historical and rooted in the modern scientific paradigm of Earth history, the mythologizing tendency in search of new cosmologies within the discourse of the Anthropocene complicates this linear trajectory of time. Anthropocene discourse invites its critics to revive and reinvent local myths. When these myths appear within the planetary scale of Anthropocene discourse, they take on a cosmological, if not universal, outlook. It is this spatial and temporal paradox of myths within the geological framework of the Anthropocene that this article investigates through the mediation of Weathering with You.
Weathering with You: Mythical Time and the Paradox of the Anthropocene
Yuriko Furuhata is Associate Professor and William Dawson Scholar of Cinema and Media History in the Department of East Asian Studies and an associate member of the Department of Art History and Communication Studies at McGill University. She works in the areas of film and media studies, architecture, visual arts, and critical theory. Her first book, Cinema of Actuality: Japanese Avant-Garde Filmmaking in the Season of Image Politics (Duke University Press, 2013), won the Best First Book Award from the Society of Cinema and Media Studies. Her second book, Climatic Media: Transpacific Experiments in Atmospheric Control (Duke University Press, 2022), explores geopolitical connections across environmental art, weather control, digital computing, and cybernetic architecture in Japan and the United States. She is currently working on two new projects: the first, titled Into Frozen Archives, explores snow and ice as storage media in relation to the legacies of Japanese and American imperialisms; the second, titled Enchanted Consultation, examines the cultural techniques of divination and prediction in relation to histories of pseudoscience, including astrology, geomancy, and parapsychology.
Yuriko Furuhata; Weathering with You: Mythical Time and the Paradox of the Anthropocene. Representations 1 February 2022; 157 (1): 68–89. doi: https://doi.org/10.1525/rep.2022.157.4.68
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