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The Great Humbling Live
A recording from Norwich Arts Centre, February 2023
Back in February, I went out on tour with At Work in the Ruins, taking the book into a series of public conversations across Europe and around the UK. As part of that, Ed Gillespie and I had the chance to take our podcast, The Great Humbling, on stage in front of a live audience at Norwich Arts Centre, where we were joined by two special guests,and Rupert Read.
I first met Charlotte when she came to report on Uncivilisation, the Dark Mountain Festival, in 2011. She ended up being drawn into the heart of the project and these days she works as co-director of Dark Mountain. She’s also an amazing writer with a gift for weaving together myth and personal experience – and after the long delay in editing this episode, it’s fortuitous that we’re finally releasing it in the week when she has launched her Substack,, ‘a metaphysical practice for collapsing times’, in which she is setting out to share the tools and practices she has gathered and relied on over the past thirty years.
Rupert is a philosopher and climate activist. Since we recorded this conversation, he has left his role as a professor at the University of East Anglia, after 26 years, to dedicate himself to his work as co-director of the Climate Majority Project. He’s also the author of many books, including Why Climate Breakdown Matters and Do You Want to Know the Truth? The Surprising Rewards of Climate Honesty. And it was thanks to his invitation and organising skills that we were able to host this conversation at Norwich Arts Centre.
It’s taken a ridiculously long time to get this episode out there, but the good news is that we’ll be launching a fifth series of The Great Humbling in a few weeks’ time. I look forward to picking up the thread of my long-running conversation with Ed and seeing where it leads us next.
Thanks for all the fascinating comments on last week’s essay, Stranger Friends. The next instalment in that series is coming in a week or so.
And thank you for your support – especially to those who are sharing my work along networks and introducing it to new readers and listeners, and to those of you whose support as paying subscribers allows me to devote time to this work.
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