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Artists and scientists working together in creative programmes >>

  • ‘Invasive Aliens’ in Science Fiction
  • A naturalist’s thoughts on the issue of Invasive Alien Species
  • Reading Poetry, Rethinking Modernity
  • Seminar: Invasive Alien Species
  • Threats to biodiversity posed by Invasive Non-Native Species

    Over Exploitation

    This is a term with totally different resonances in art and in biology and first got us interested in developing more cross-disciplinary research. Clearly across the subjects of art and biodiversity we might be using the same words but they are interpreted in quite different ways and apply in varying contexts. Culturally if we speak of ‘invasive alien species’ or ‘invasive aliens’ it raises all sorts of sensitivities. We simply cannot use such a term with any tact to apply to people from elsewhere, without being seriously offensive. Whereas in biology, the term is also politically loaded, it tends to be used in a much more workaday fashion, even though externally introduced plants, birds, insects or animals still may pose a threat if they prove to have the resilience to be in competition with existing natives. In artistic terms, the potential for native species to be outnumbered is expressed with the greatest imagination and drama: in the cinema aliens from outer space are some of the most frightening creatures. If we consider the term ‘invasive alien species’ culturally and holistically across arts and sciences together, each subject may throw greater light on the other and open up the potential for deeper and more creative communication.