Spotlight: Claire Colebrook

Spotlight: Claire Colebrook

Meet Claire Colebrook, author of Who Would You Kill to Save the World?.

Colebrook has been at Penn State since 2008 as a professor of English, Philosophy, and Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. She originally moved to Penn State to work on human extinction and has since published several works.

Who Would You Kill to Save the World is a postapocalyptic book that gives a different perspective to how the world ends in comparison to how it is typically portrayed in cinema. Colebrook was interested in how there is often widespread obstruction while a small pocket of the population is saved, such as a big city.

She wanted to give a spin on this narrative by asking “who would you kill?” rather than “who would be saved?”. There may always be a price to pay, but we must think about who is paying it and is it humanized. She also drew from black studies and how black life can only exist if the world is to end. We deal with questions such as this on the everyday without realizing. This theme ties to climate change and how western societies are at the primary of consumption.

Colebrook is currently working on two sustainability projects. One of which focuses on archives and what we will save in the future. The other focuses on moral grandstanding. She states that often, “wokeness” and attention is given to topics such as race and gender but not as much to climate change. The same energy that is given to writing posts, arranging protests, and more should be given to sustainability issues as well.