The Pacific Island of Nauru, situated at the heart of the Pacific Ocean, is at the frontline of environmental crisis. Strip mined by colonisers of its natural phosphate reserves, the backbone of industrial agriculture, the Island nation has over the past decade been reliant on the economy of Australia’s brutal offshore refugee incarceration regime. Now facing severe eco-systemic vulnerabilities such as contaminated water, diminishing land, droughts and sea inundation, Nauru’s environment exemplifies the highly economically and socially precarious position induced by a combination of extractive colonialism and racial capitalism. Bringing together site specific audio recordings with Indigenous Nauruan voices campaigning for self-determination and self-representation, I will show how sound and listening are vital to understanding, and amplifying, the deep relations to land and sea that Nauruan’s hold. These relations, heard through sound, are integral to understanding the complexities that frontline Pacific communities face.
Kanngieser A 2020 Listening to Ecocide. Sonic Acts Academy, De Brakke Grond, Amsterdam. 21-23 February