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What's in a Word
The July/August 2022 issue

In this issue of Resurgence & Ecologist we look at language. Mitzi Jonelle Tan challenges the use of language at global climate talks. Stephanie Boxall looks at the living-language-land project for a fresh approach to the environmental crisis and April Charlo explains how saving Indigenous languages can help save the planet.

In the Ecologist pages Yasmin Dahnoun reports on ancient agroforestry systems which are being revived in Central America. Whilst in Connected Life Esthela Calderón recalls finding connection while harvesting corn in Nicaragua and David George Haskell explores the ancient roots of hearing.

For our Feature Story, Elizabeth Maruma Mrema calls on the power of collective action for biodiversity. In Wisdom & Wellbeing Aylin Haas and Jonathan Drori share their memories and perspectives on the Lebanese Cedar, as part of our 'In Company of Trees' series. Within Art & Culture PL Henderson explores the history of women botanical illustrators.

We hope you enjoy our selection of free articles from this issue of Resurgence & Ecologist magazine.

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Featured articles from the latest issue of Resurgence & Ecologist magazine

Words That Fail Us

Mitzi Jonelle Tan is a spokesperson of Youth Advocates for Climate Action Philippines. She explains why language matters and how it has been used at the UN Climate summit to delay action on the climate crisis. She challenges world leaders to step up - the COP27 agreement cannot be just another text that hinders progress and blocks climate justice.

Food Forests for a Resilient Future

Across the world, agricultural food systems are collapsing under the impact of climate breakdown and diversity loss. Yasmin Dahnoun discovers two projects in Central America using agroforestry to combat deforestation and the impact of monocultures - returning life to the land and enabling local people to grow crops again.

Uniting Mind, Matter and Life

Alfredo Erlwein-Vicuña considers the theory of autopoiesis which defined life as a system of interactions. In response Fritjof Capra claimed, "for the first time, we have a scientific theory that unifies mind, matter and life." The theory of autopoiesis redefines life, language and knowing, providing a portal to a radical shift in the understanding of life, as relevant today as it was 50 years.

As I Roved Out

Singer and collector of songs Sam Lee shares his thoughts on folk songs which are to him both map and compass - guiding journeys through many landscapes, on a quest to reclaim a sense of wildness. He invites us all to "Find your folk song and invent your ritual to adorn it," and in doing so create new ways to nurture a love of Nature.

Lost for Words

Just as humans are annihilating the diversity of life across the planet, languages are also being destroyed - every two weeks, the last fluent speaker of a language dies. In the introduction to our special feature on language, Paula Zamorano Osorio explains why if we lose biodiversity, we lose human diversity, and vice versa, and why standing up for Indigenous rights has never been more important.

Speaking Nature's Language

Stephanie Boxall discovers 'living-language-land' - a project using native language to share insights into how people from different cultures connect with Nature. Co-founder Neville Gabie explains, "The project was a profound lesson in the joy of listening. It's not until you open yourself up to the experience and knowledge of other voices that you can begin to make that journey of empathy."

Picture Credits

Cover Image: Artwork by Carole Hénaff; Words That Fail Us: Fusion Series #3937 - 2019. Collage on paper by Cecil Touchon; Food Forests for a Resilient Future: Agroforesty at Don Carlos' site in Tatín Village © Contour Lines; Uniting mind, matter and life: I never saw it until you named it by Alison Milner (painting with linoprint collage); As I Roved Out: Illustration © Andrew Davidson; Lost for Words: Artwork by Margherita Paoletti; Speaking Nature's Language: Aibidil, from Living Language Land: Word Portraits from the Earth. Textile art by Lorraine Roy, 2022 Instagram:

The Resurgence Trust is an educational charity (Charity Number: 1120414) that publishes Resurgence & Ecologist magazine,, and the to promote ecological sustainability, social justice and spiritual values.

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