After Rivers/ After Landscapes

Blog Post 9 – Lecture visit #3 [Complete]

I wanted to talk for a minute about the lecture given by Dilip de Cunha on the 28th. For those that attended, they can attest that the points that Dilip talked on were both revolutionary and mind-blowingly confusing at the same time. His researched and the majority of his presentation were about epistemological resilience vs ontological resilience. Now these terms mostly mean nothing the the average user, but to break them down (regarding to water), the first is about recovery from disaster and the other is about not getting into the disaster in the first place. Now these are completely different ideas when talking about natural disasters from water. Each of these leads to a certain form in inquiry to begin to delve into the topics.

           Design Inquiry                                                                                     Imaginative Inquiry

“people see things differently”                                                          “people see different things”


Referenced above in the photo, Prof. de Cunha pitched the idea of shifting the “time of reality” from the ground layer to the moments of precipitation and wanted to shift the moments of ephemerality to the ground layer.  He does this to better show areas of high rain amounts. He uses this to propose the idea, Is the Mississippi River is a river or a landscape?

One of the biggest revolutionary ideas that Prof. de Cunha brought to critique is the idea that there is no such thing as a “natural disaster”; there is only disaster by design. “Nature does what Nature does”. This is perhaps the most eye opening concept I have heard in quite a while. It really puts things into perspective just how human-centered our perception of our surroundings is.


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