Wild plants, sex and money at the end of the world

Media:  Talk   

April 12, 2016

Byens Lys

Carsten Smith-Hall

Professor in Forest and People in Developing Countries at the Department of Food and Resource Economics of the University of Copenhagen. His research is particularly focused on forests and human health and commercial utilisation of Himalayan biodiversity, with emphasis on trade and conservation of medicinal plants. Homepage


The Sleeptherapists aren't afraid to take the weight of the world on their shoulders, because The Sleeptherapists are here for those who cannot fall asleep and for those who need to wake up. But The Sleeptherapists aren't just a blanket you can pull over your head. The Sleeptherapists don’t believe in a life after death but in death in life. The Sleeptherapists don't believe in any God but in the Divine Dream witch one night will be dreamt by us all, prior to the eternal sleep. The Sleeptherapists believe in all and everything, in nobody and just in themselves, at one time and forever and never no more because The Sleeptherapists know just how much has been slept in the classroom. Homepage

How are wild plants important to people’s survival in the Global South? Can wild plants help rural families to escape poverty? How is this playing out in remote mountain areas - how does sex in China drive the transformation of agrarian societies in the Himalayas? Is trade in wild plants driving species to the brink of extinction? Are rural poor harvesters getting a fair share of the trade profit?

Globalisation is a term which everyone is used to hearing but do we grasp what it actually entails? How is our consumption of a can of tuna which we buy in the supermarket dependent on other people’s economies in another part of the planet? Globalisation is reducing the importance of physical distance on earth, for instance through changes in communication and transport and this has led to the interconnectedness of people’s consumption behaviour and livelihoods across geographies.

Plants are important to each single person on the planet. Carsten Smith-Hall will present research documenting the economic importance of wild plants to rural households in the Global South. Focusing on commercial medicinal plants from the Himalayas, he will show how increasing household incomes in China and India are fuelling demand for plants harvested in high altitude rural villages and how this is changing people’s way of living.

Afterwards, dry-ice cocktails and the Søvnterapeuterne, composed of the human acid-trip Mikkel Bajer in cahoots with emotion-pathologist Charlie Andersen, will recreate some of their self-effacing shortcuts to higher self-awareness of life's fine knife edge with the help of the death-violin and trance-guitar.

Entrance to the event is free. No registration is necessary. Doors open at 19:00.

The talk: