Welcome to the Parliament of Things

Bruno Latour educational and public programme

In 2020, the Embassy of the North Sea joined the International Spinozaprijs Foundation to develop the educational and public programme Welcome to the Parliament of Things. This programme is built around the presentation of the Spinozalens to the French philosopher and sociologist Bruno Latour (1949).

Latour, technology and sustainability

The Spinozalens is awarded every two years to a thinker who through his or her work has made an important contribution to society. According to the Spinozalens jury, Latour was a pioneer who placed the relationship between technology, human behaviour and sustainability clearly on the agenda. As far back as the early ninety nineties, he formulated the highly innovative principle that non-humans (animals, plants, rivers, seas, etc.) also deserve a voice in our democracy. Since that time, he has regularly called for the establishment of a ‘parliament of things’.

Educational and public programme

The Embassy of the North Sea, a collective that has set itself the goal of putting into practice the theories and principles of Latour, is the perfect partner for the International Spinozaprijs Foundation in drawing up an educational and public programme. In collaboration with Building Conversation, we are also organising parliamentary sessions in the classroom, for senior secondary general and pre-university education (havo and vwo). In collaboration with the DesignLab/PhilosophyLab of the University of Twente, we are also organising a Bruno Latour design competition at universities and academies and are calling upon public stages and museums to elaborate a programme in the runup to the presentation of the Spinozalens on 24 November 2020.

Read on for further details about the various elements.