Planetary Personhood — A Universal Declaration Of Martian Rights
Planetary Personhood is an interplanetary campaign pursuing radical space decolonization. The project proposes independent personhood for the entire planet Mars, and considers the possibility of solidarity with the entities already there — the stones! Can we be kind to a planet, even without “life”?
Initiated by Nonhuman Nonsense, Planetary Personhood proposes A Universal Declaration of Martian Rights, calling for an end to biocentrism and rejection of extractivist frontierism on Mars.
As NASA, SpaceX, and others now attempt to bring earthlings to Mars, Planetary Personhood is an opportunity to free ourselves from the conceptual baggage of earthly traditions and systems. Seeking to move away from the dualistic divide between living beings and inanimate matter, the project invites us to a new way of relating to a planetary whole, and to the myriad of nonhuman forces and actants that surround us.
Recognizing the Martians, Planetary Personhood supports the positive aspects of space exploration, such as humbleness and wonder for the vastness of the universe, while it prevents our boldness from sliding into recklessness.
What sort of meteorite do we want to be? As we now blast off the Earth with renewed efforts to step into the unknown, why we go matters. Our intentions direct our actions, and our actions continuously reshape the path of evolution, for both living and nonliving beings.
If we don’t change ourselves and our minds before we go to Mars, space is not going to change it for us. Planetary Personhood, as a declaration, does not provide immediate answers but rather poses a series of questions and frames a certain Martian Mindset: What forms of presences and absences are supported and constructed by particular activities? Who is allowed to maintain their current form? Can respecting Martian ways of being, move us to reconcile with Earthlings?
Nonhuman Nonsense is a research-driven design and art studio creating near-future fabulations and experiments somewhere between utopia and dystopia. They seek to transmute our relationship to the non-human, by embracing the contradictory and the paradoxical — telling stories that open the public imaginary to futures that currently seem impossible.
Nonhuman Nonsense work in the embryonic stages of system transformation, in the realm of social dreaming and world-making processes. Aiming to redirect focus to the underlying ethical and political issues, to challenge the power structures that enable and aggravate the current destruction of the (non)human world — allowing other entities to exist.
Founded by Leo Fidjeland and Linnea Våglund, it is based between Berlin and Stockholm.
(photo: Sara Kollberg)