AMY HOWDEN-CHAPMAN

‘Uncertainty Italicized’ considers the role language plays in progressing the public debate around
climate change. The performance explores the tension that exists between appropriately illustrating scientific uncertainties while maintaining the urgency of political action.

This tension can be seen as a metaphor for other cultural challenges that Climate Change presents.
As the scientific world tries to impress on the public at large the complexities and dangers of the situation, political pressures, economic interests, philosophical quandaries and emotion all further complicate and obfuscate the message. 

'Uncertainty Italicized,' takes as its starting point the IPCC 'Intergovemental Panel on Climate Change's Guidance note' for the writing of their 5th assessment report. The notes attempt to outline
a way in which authors should consistently treat statements of  uncertainty. An element of these notes
is a 'likelihood scale' as a means to make consistent the views of the hundreds of scientists contributing
to the report. 

Reproducing the textual elements of this scale using materials that introduce color and opacity, 'Collaborated  Language' considers how language becomes more or less flexible in different cultural spheres, and how such flexibility is signaled and controlled.