Billebaude n ° 7



Welcome to the Anthropocene.
In this new geological era, man has become the main agent for modifying the balance of the “Earth system”. Everywhere we observe nature, including in rocks, we find the human imprint.
How to think about this new interweaving between man and nature? Concretely, in which landscapes, with which animals will we live in the era of global warming?


Billebaude Collection

96 pages, 230 x 300 mm
Public price TTC France:

François Sommer Foundation

Anne de Malleray
Director of collection
Tel: 01 53 01 92 40

Facebook page Billebaude




Wherever researchers observe nature, they find man, whose traces are present in the soil, the oceans and the air. The anthropocene refers to this new geological era where we have become the main force capable of transforming the equilibria on the surface of the planet.

If the date of the beginning of the Anthropocene is debated within the scientific community, we have observed, since the 50s, a dizzying increase in the impact of human activities on the Earth system, what researchers have called the great acceleration. . It's hard to say what our habitat will look like in a few decades, but it will be deeply upset. After several millennia of stability, the climate is disrupted and the depletion of certain natural resources threatens us.
Paradoxically, the gap is widening between the scientific facts which are reported to us and our capacity to act collectively. Our modes of production, our political institutions, our representations of the world, are overwhelmed by this crisis. All of our benchmarks are becoming obsolete. While modern thought had clearly distinguished man from nature, we find it difficult to imagine this unprecedented situation, where the two are intertwined.
This issue of Billebaude combines views from philosophy, biology, environmental management and art to reflect on the practical and philosophical questions posed by the entry into the Anthropocene. In what habitat and with what biodiversity will we live in the era of global warming? How did we come to such a destructive way of exploiting nature? What knowledge should be mobilized to get out of the crisis? In the field, we travel through French forests with managers and scientists who highlight the uncertainties surrounding the future of forests. Ethnologists tell how, in Lapland, reindeer herders developed a science of snow which allows them to adapt to increasingly sudden variations in the climate. In San Francisco, the arrival of young sea lions on the streets arouses excitement and illustrates the paradoxes surrounding the value we place on wild animals. In Namibia, the coexistence between man and nature is being rebuilt through community management based on an ancestral relationship with wild animals and with the support of modern tools.
How to study nature in the era of global warming? How to think about this unprecedented situation where man is the main geological agent? We discuss it in this issue with biologist Vincent Devictor and sociologist Bruno Latour. We also question the artistic representations of nature. Among contemporary painters of the industrial revolution in England and today with the emergence of an anthropocene art, where nature is no longer only an aesthetic support, but also a place of political debate.
Both in the field, in research laboratories and artists' studios, the climate crisis is causing unforeseen effects, uncertainties, and reveals the need to recompose new knowledge and new representations in order to understand this nature, of which we we are distant and that catches up with us. It is an oppressive but exciting challenge. Welcome to the Anthropocene!

Anne de Malleray


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