Teaching Notes for Exellent Evidence of Human Activity:
Use in the classroom to discuss: segmented narratives; internal structures; the death drive; personal reflection; survival amid extinction events; apocalypses; destructive actions; poetic/economical language; lyrical writing; final sentences/lines; urgency; individual humans and the environment; climate change; grief narratives; colony collapse; the pain scale; teeth; taxidermy; memory; insect life; "America"; buffalo.
Pairs well with Last Days of the Microsaurs, Surviving in Drought, The Hand Implements.
Excellent Evidence of Human Activity by Sara Ryan
Earthworks that hold no water. Swarms of nothing sweet. Teeth and the stink of saline. Bee stings. Buffalo gore. Butterflies dead in a box. This is the material of the Anthropocene. This is Excellent Evidence of Human Activity. Winner of The Cupboard Pamphlet’s 2018 Annual Contest, Sara Ryan’s Excellent Evidence of Human Activity is an urgent, elegiac rumination on environmental impact, unsalvageable animals, and pain. Our appetites exceed the world. Our consequences gather like bees. Let us look directly at all that we have done.