ADAPTATION AND RESISTANCE TO THE NEW CLIMATE REGIME:
There are two principles inherent in the very nature of things, recurring in some particular embodiments whatever field we explore – the spirit of change, and the spirit of conservation.
Alfred North Whitehead, Science and the Modern World
Change, there always has been. On Earth, everything results from impulses of adaptation and resistance to the constant movement of things: in order to persist, any given entity has to adapt, changing; or it resisted, and thus conserving itself – here lies the «spirit of change», and the «spirit of conservation» essential to the nature of things (Whitehead 1925). But the natural metastable state of the world as been deranged by a new triggering element of change. After 12,000 years of Holocene, here is the Anthropocene, the new geological age that absorbs the impact of the most recent developments of human action, releasing climatic mutations of all kinds. Thinking it over requires a new relation with the earth, thus imposing new tectonic hypothesis.
In Thus Spoke Zarathustra (1883) Nietzsche exhorts to be loyal to the earth
«The overman (Übermensch) is the meaning of the earth (Sinn der Erde). Let your will say: the overman shall be the meaning of the earth (Sinn der Erde)!» (Nietzsche 1883, 6)
Descending the mountain, the hero Zarathustra conduces an all-encompassing uprising of geology and geography against the domination of history . Although Nietzsche did not use the term geophilosophy, his work emanates a thought connected to the earth, and to the construction of a new direction for the earth (Sinn der Erde ) enacted by the Übermensch, or overhumanity – a significant concept that sets the question of self-overcoming, but a self-overcoming with a tectonic significance.
The earth is at stake, not the world . It is by freeing himself from the historical bindings, surpassing any nationalistic motivations and emancipated from transcendental promises, the overman (Übermensch) will come: this new inhabitant of the earth, engage in a single but collective drive towards greater planetary events. Faithful to the earth materials, faithful to Gaia:
«I beseech you, my brothers, remain faithful to the earth and do not believe those who speak to you of extra-terrestrial hopes!» (Nietzsche 1883, 6, emphasis added)
What does faithful to the earth mean today?
Perhaps it means To Think Like A Mountain (Pensar Como Uma Montanha) – the title of the Portuguese translation of A Sand County Almanac, And Sketches Here And There by Aldo Leopold, a field notebook written in 1948 as a celebration of the last wild natural stretch of the American Landscape. In the foreword, as a lament, one can read «There are some who can live without wild things, and some who cannot. These essays are the delights and dilemmas of who cannot» (Leopold 1949,vii). But this will lead to another halt: will wilderness remain untouched?
The progressive development in history has always been an expansion of culture and civilization on Earth. Therefore if there is a human «geo-history» it entails a progress in space – as each epoch results from continuous spatial revolution. Some considerations on the mutations the idea of space suffered have been outlined by Michel Foucault in «Des spaces autres». Still they are pertinent. Therein three paradigms emerge: the archaic space of localization, that corresponded to the seminal differentiation of places based on mythical dichotomies (sacred/profane; known/unknown), a pattern that was dominant until the expansion towards the infinite with Galileo, thus giving rise to the space of expansion. Presently, the question of emplacement dissolves the preceding spatial order. At stake is the figure of a globe, totally scrutinized and mapped, turning the limits of spatial extension into a «great anxiety» (Foucault, 1984: 753-754). The plot thickens as global (and finite) environment is being profoundly marked by the growing impact of human activity. The geological time scale, once divided by contingent global impact thresholds such as meteor strikes or other major episodes, is being disturbed by the accelerated degradation of the atmosphere composition and other land surface transformations induced by human agency. So, within the triad land-earth-globe , the question of the Anthropocene  seems to be forcing a review on the thresholds of thought.
One of the observable consequences is that earth isn’t just a medium. It is an active environment. Moreover, earth is where thought and tectonics meet. Thus, following Deleuze and Guattari, who credited Nietzsche as the first geophilosopher, an approximation to thought strictly based on a subject-object relation should be limited. The act of thinking is grounded «in the relationship of territory and earth»:
«Subject and object give a poor approximation of thought. Thinking is neither a line drawn between subject and object nor a revolving of one around the other. Rather, thinking takes place in the relationship of the territory and the earth» (Deleuze and Guattari 1991, 85).
By instituting earth as an absolute, philosophy turns fundamentally into a geophilosophy, which not only means «[…] that philosophy is borne by the earth but also that it is a thoroughly autonomous construction because its ground, its earth, is entirely immanent to it” (Gasché 2014, 21). In addition, not only through the construction of concepts, but also through the construction of the earth itself – assuming that to the materical assemblage required by architecture, there are concepts in the making. Therefore, to adapt and resist to the new climate regime means a new tectonic hypothesis that must imply a geophilosophy.
Mechanization and power technology assured an increase in population (already exceeding 7 billion people), and the generalized tendency towards a «smart city» program seems to result from the challenge to manage the urban space facing such an immense pressure over earth and its land use. Not only because of the required ground for allotments and housing, but also because cities, in order to function, necessarily compromise other parcels of soil through agricultural, energetic exploitation and other resources – complying with the end of nature’s wild state. At the core of this extension of the city-form to the entire globe lies the problematization of the Anthropocene.
All this poses a dilemma when Facing Gaia. Gaia is the term James Lovelock yield to problematize the surface tension of the earth as skin or pelicula, not merely a surface of support but necessarily something on which everything interacts and moves. Gaia is where everything is either resisting or adapting to the ceaseless movement of things. But nature has altered.
«“The earth,” he said, “has a skin; and this skin has diseases. One of these diseases for example is called: ‘Human being’”» (Nietzsche 1883, 103).
Nevertheless, it doesn’t mean it ended – in fact the whole problem was thinking nature as immutable. Thus, the climate change chiasm is denoting an all-too-(re)active nature, sending of storms and catastrophes in an unforeseen planetary scale. Because of imprudent land use, deforestation, the rise of CO2 levels, the altered courses of the rivers, the plague of plastic debris, etc., humans have become earth’s main disease. In this sense, the idea of defining our present period as that of the Anthropocene is a crucial one. Geophilosophy is not an eco-philosophy, but a philosophy «within, an earth that intrinsically belongs to philosophy, an earth that is the turf of philosophical thought.” (Gasché 2014, 16)  – and this means thinking with the earth. And by doing so the Anthropocene will constantly remind us of our duties: not the period in which the scene of man on earth is geologically and meteorologically noted, but the period when we pledge to do something about it. Thus, borrowing the idea from Latour, this calls for the response ability (Latour 2014) to clean up all the mess we have been doing since the Industrial Revolution.
As previously argued, adopting the entrance at the time of the Anthropocene should entail human agency developed to the dimension of geological force. Neither of disturbance nor imbalance, but of building the Menschen-Erde (human-earth) – herein to adapt and resist climate change:
«Importance depends on endurance. Endurance is the retention through time of an achievement of value. What endures is identity of pattern, self-inherited. Endurance requires the favourable environment. The whole of science revolves round this question of enduring organisms» (Whitehead 1925, 193).
We have to endure an enveloping atmosphere that is constantly changing. This is the purpose of reviewing the Anthropocene as a tectonic hypothesis of Menschen-Erde.
Following Nietzsche was the initial premise. When anticipating the problematization of the Anthropocene, he foresaw that the fate of the Menschen-Erde (human-earth) can either be a «hell» or a «garden» (Shapiro 2016, 13) – hence the importance of earth as a political concept and the site of all constructions. The point of living in this epoch is that all agents share the same «shape-changing destiny» (Latour 2014, 17).
This is a reading that wants to suggest that the Anthropocene has the redemptive possibilities of joining nature and technics. However this requires a geo-philosophy as «both geographical and mental milieu that liberates the possibilities for all human activities» (Gasché 2014, 15-16). In 1925, Alfred North Whitehead had already suggested that «it is among the merits of science to equip the future for its duties». Let’s say that smart cities rhetoric is meant to work: information and communication technologies must be deployed resulting in cost and energy savings supporting low-carbon economy. We can call it a cleantech turn with the will and ability to change transportation, energy, waste management and built environment. It is a political issue that looms, and one difficult to solve: one must accelerate a reconciliation with something that is constantly changing and taking on guises that are still strange or unthinkable. A much needed political attitude that holds a great promise in turning the cities around the globe more sustainable and efficient. Smart cities, as a discourse, are a figuration of modes of survival – and it might work for at stake is the habitability of the earth. Or else… Dinosauria We .
 Established in Hegel in order to locate historical events as temporal organisation of the world (Welt). Gary Shapiro offers an important reading on this matter: «When Nietzsche speaks of the earth (sometimes more specifically of the Menschen-Erde), he is at least implicitly formulating a political atheology, an understanding of the sphere or territory of human habitation; Nietzsche’s war for the sake of the earth must involve an attack, parody, and inversion of political theology. The earth in this perspective is radically plural. It is neither intrinsically defined by the nation-state (like Hegel’s world), or, as in the Weltprozess of Eduard von Hartmann […]. Such a contrast of earth and world is very close to Deleuze and Guattari’s methodological protocol of subordinating history to geography» (Shapiro 2016, 4-5).
 Sinn der Erde is often translated as meaning of the Earth. However the German word Sinn points a direction. This will be the denoted sense used herein – and it is also the interpretation adopted by Gary Shapiro.
 As indicated in Beyond Good and Evil (1886) Nietzsche considered world to be a concept filled with theological affiliations (Shapiro 2016, 16).
 In Schmittian geopolitics, land-appropriation [Landnahme] is the constituent foundation of the juridical order and the events that came upon it. It is with this first movement of appropriation that a primordial pattern, the nomos, is extracted from Earth. It is an initial measure containing all the later ones and from which all property regimes emerge. This is the constituent nature of the nomos: an initial and pre-juridical act as it is the «measure by which the ground and soil of the earth [Grund und Boden der Erde] in a particular order is divided and situated» (Schmitt 1950, 74). From the archaic nomos, apprehended through mythical knowledge, to the nomos of the Earth, a scientific form that emerged during the great sea voyages, it is traceable that both law and property regimes exist in direct connection with the ground. Even cosmic space, boundless and infinite, is already pre-occupied by intergalactic treatises – already at the horizon when building up on Mars is becoming an insistent quest.
 The title of a conference given by Foucault in 1967 at the Cercle d'Études Architecturales, published only twenty years later in Architecture, Movement, Continuité, no. 5. Michel Foucault only authorized the publication of the text months before his death, in 1984, and it is compiled in Dits et écrits: 1954-1988, vol. IV, Paris, Gallimard.
 This tension between Land and Globe is explored by Latour in Facing Gaia (2015).
 Cf. Bruno Latour Facing Gaia (2015).
 The Anthropocene is considered to have begun either in 1610 or 1964. This is the proposition of the article «Defining the Anthropocene» by S. Lewis and M. Maslin, where a review of human geology and induced environmental impacts was held. Cf. Lewis, S. & Maslin, M. 2015. Defining the Anthropocene. Nature, vol 519. pp. 171-180.
 Geophilosophy appears as a concept in Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari last book together What is philosophy? (1991).
 The title of the series of lectures by Bruno Latour first published in 2015 as Face à Gaïa. Huit conférences sur le nouveau régime climatique. Paris: Éditions La Découverte.
 As acknowledged by James Lovelock in Gaia: The Practical Science of a Planetary Medicine (1991).
 “In spite of some occasional ambiguities in What is Philosophy?, geophilosophy, according to D&G, is a philosophy of the earth in a way similar to that in which geohistory is the history of the earth, that is, of the both geographical and mental milieu that liberates the possibilities for aIl human activities.” (Gasché 2014, 15-16)
 The chiasmus between an absolute engineering of the earth and the end of nature is well structured in Manuel Bogalheiro’s «O Fim da Natureza: Paradoxos e Incertezas na Era Do Antropoceno E Do Geo-Construtivismo» (The End Of Nature: Paradoxes And Uncertainties In The Era Of The Anthropocene And Geo-Constructivism). In Revista de Comunicação e Linguagens, 49. (ed. Catarina Patrício) Available at: http://www.fcsh.unl.pt/rcl/index.php/rcl/issue/viewIssue/Cidades%20do%20Futuro/5
 See the unabridged passage: «Modern science has imposed on humanity the necessity for wandering. Its progressive thought and its progressive technology make the transition through time, from generation to generation, a true migration into uncharted seas of adventure. The very benefit of wandering is that it is dangerous and needs skill to avert evils. We must expect, therefore, that the future will disclose dangers. It is the business of the future to be dangerous; and it is among the merits of science that it equips the future for its duties». (Whitehead 1925, 208)
 Invoking here the striking poem «Dinosauria We» by Charles Bukowski, collected in The Last Night of the Earth Poems. 1992. Santa Rosa: Black Sparrow Press.
Dates given in square brackets refer to the original edition of the cited works.
Dates given in-text citations refer to the original edition of the cited works
Deleuze, G. & Guattari, F. 1994 . Geophilosophy. In What is Philosophy? New York: Columbia University Press, pp. 85-113.
Foucault M. 1994 . Des espaces autres. In Dits et écrits: 1954-1988, vol. IV, Paris: Gallimard, pp. 752-762.
Gasché, R. 2014. Geophilosophy On Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari’s What Is Philosophy?. Illinois: Northwestern University Press
Latour, B. 2014. Anthropology at the Time of the Anthropocene: A Personal View of What Is to Be Studied. Distinguished lecture American Association of Anthropologists (draft version for comments). Last acceded on June 2018. http://www.bruno-latour.fr/sites/default/files/139-AAA-Washington.pdf
Latour, B. 2017 . Facing Gaia: Eight Lectures on the New Climate Regime. Cambridge: Polity Press.
Leopold, A. 1968 . A Sand County Almanac, and Sketches Here and There. New York: Oxford University Press.
Lewis, S. & Maslin, M. 2015. Defining the Anthropocene. Nature, vol 519. pp. 171-180.
Nietzsche, F. 2007 . Thus Spoke Zarathustra. 3rd Ed. New York: Cambridge University Press.
Schmitt, C. 2008 . Le Nomos de la Terre dans le droit des gens. trad. E. Kennedy. Paris: Quadrige/Presses Universitaires de France.
Shapiro, G. 2016. Nietzsche’s Earth: Great Events, Great Politics. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.
Whitehead, A.  1948. Science and the Modern World – Lowell Lectures 1925. New York: Pelican Mentor.
To cite this article:
Patrício, C. (2018). Adaptation and Resistance to the New Climate Regime: A Tectonic Hypothesis. In Gracia P. (Ed.) Waterfront: Tagus River Gateway – Architecture and Climate Change. Lisbon: Lusófona University. ISBN: 978-989-757-091-9