Faculty Mentor

Sherrie Steiner

Subject Area

Anthropology, Environmental Studies, Geography, Political Science, Sociology


Globalization is fraught with dangers due to institutional relationships that threaten humanity. These institutions, acting in unaware-concert, provide a looming danger for everyone in 21st century life. Humanity has created the threatening context; humanity bears the responsibility for its remedy. This is known as “world risk society” (Beck, 2009). The threat is all encompassing, grounded in material limits; no human is exempt from the danger. People can use these two features as fuel to politically engage and create meaningful change. It is this political context that requires generating everybody’s political will all the way from the heads of state to the average citizen.

This fictitious slam poetry piece seeks to generate political will within the reader. The “Reflections from 2013” are meant to emphasize the role of “manufactured uncertainties” (2009)—the human-made risky elements of globalization-- which create a pressure within the reader as they travel from the present into the four possible futures. The order of the futures is intentionally designed to increasingly generate a sense of political will as the reader progresses from the most structurally unsustainable future (Future I) to the most sustainable future (Future IV). The movement of the piece is a transition from the possibility of destruction to the possibility of adapting to a life affirming way of organization in the end.

Stories do not reveal how the future will go, only how it could go.

Stories do not unpack ideas in linear form. Rather, they allow for the reader to encounter embodied ideas.


manufactured uncertainties, risk, globalization, slam poetry, sustainability

Copyright statement

© 2014 Williams