Another (news)letter is here!
We are sharing with you something we are working on since quite a long time → 24-31 August 2022 we’ll have in Topolove the The Academy of MarginsSummer school!

This year the long-lasting project of the Academy of Margins started, a learning platform that stimulates collaborative and discursive learning, based on intimacy and rootedness where the margins are not only the site but also the widely intended content of the Academy itself.

The Academy of MarginsSummer school is a collective experiential learning event where theory and practices will merge around the topic of environmental care during seven days of conviviality and study.

* We start with this word which – pronounced differently – has two beautiful meanings in Italian and English. In Italian it means “dear”, when addressing women.

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Some info and how to apply

The Summer school will take place in Topolò/Topolove, a small village of 20 inhabitants at the border between Italy and Slovenia, where Robida works and lives. The events will happen in the abandoned landscape which surrounds the village which could be defined as a Nature-Culture (Haraway) or Tiers Paysage (Clément) since it hides – it its apparent wildness – many signs of a past human presence.

The program will include theoretical and practical approaches to the topic of environmental care, as an impellent ugency of today but also in relation to the specificities of the landscape where the festival will take place.
Young practitioners from different backgrounds (design, architecture, art, philisophy etc) will propose active workshops, somatic practices, experiential reaserches which will stimulate attentiveness toward the place – what the sociologist Jane Tronto refers to as the “caring about”. An ecosystem of practices will develop in and for the landscape which surround the village.
Scholars, thinkers, authors who deal with environmental humanities, eco-critics and ecology will be invited to give lectures within specific places chosen by them in relation to their topics. 〰〰 In the next days we'll start to present some of the guests, mainly through our IG profile .

The small caring actions – as weeding an old path crossing the abandoned fields, liberating a tree from ivy, cleaning the stones of a terraced wall – will take place in the mornings and will be accompanied by lectures, readings, conversations among invited guests. Learning moments will happen while care-taking landscape. We’ll try this way to “incorporate in the manner of telling a sense of place” (bell hooks).
The afternoons will be dedicated to workshop, guided by different artists and practitioners focusing on the multiple micro-landscapes* surrounding the village: for each micro-landscape a site-specific workshop will be developed by a chosen artist. In this way the whole variety of small, different environments will be explored and each participant would realize the complex ecology which surrounds the village (and which only from a first sight wrongly looks a same wild forest).
The late afternoons will host lectures and talks, where words, reflections and theories will be at the center of the attention. With the day ending, a softer atmosphere will surround the place. The program will end with a collective dinner.

Through practices of landscape care-taking, through workshops of deep listening, experimental walks, movement in space, observation, tactile exploration and through lectures, conversations and collective readings we’ll tackle topics as the non-human right to space, landscape dwelling, ecopedagogy, care, weathering, vibrant matter, ecotone, hydrofeminism, kinship, Antropocene etc. and encounter disciplines as the environmental humanities, plant philosphy, ecifeminism, political ecology, ecocritics, posthuman geographies etc.

* different types of forests, fields covered with wild blackberries, water-scapes, grass fields, abandoned orchards, chestnut forests, waterfalls but also (wo)man-made landscapes as terraced walls, forgotten paths, ruins of old barns, the two old mills, the enormous sheep barn.

Within the The Academy of MarginsSummer school we will also launch the 8th issue of Robida magazine dedicated to islands. The presentation of the magazine will be done in an island of Topolove, on Sunday, August 28th, during the morning!

We would like to imagine the mood of the Summer school like this,
similar to last year's Care of Margins symposium

How to apply

The summer school will be an event open to everyone BUT if you want to stay the whole week you need to apply. This is important because the village is small and we cannot host for one week a too big amount of people (we simply do not have the infrastructure for big numbers).

To apply:
◯ you send an email to (writing Academy summer school in the subject line of the email)
◯ you send an IMAGE that makes you think of what you can encounter here, of what you desire to experience, of what you are curious to know and meet
◯ you write a small TEXT (half a page, around 2000 characters) which contains something about you, a question you come with and something you want to share or give back!

We need the applications just in case there are too many requests! .
Deadline: Sunday, July 31st – we know, it's soon, you can take some days more (if you let you know that you need them)

We’ll take only some days to go through the application and let you know asap

◯ The participation to the summer school is FREE but you will need to contribute for food → we will buy food and cook together
◯ Sleeping → we’ll organise with tents and renting houses!
◯ If you want to come not for the whole period but for some days, please write to us anyway! The priority will be given to those who want to stay the whole period but we are of course open to all different proposals!
◯ You can of course participate to one or more events of the summer school without necessarily stay here: if you live nearby or if you want to rent a place in the area and participate to the activity it is of course possible :)

GROUNDED → “How to be grounded without getting stuck in the mud of personal experience? I guess I am trying to re-articulate ‘grounded’ as a ‘thinking-and-making-with’. (...) To be grounded means to be porous to remote impressions, to trust the touching done by (other-than-human) others.” → Femke Snelting in Making Matters by Janneke Wesseling & Florian Cramer (eds.)

Summer school pre-event (the applications are still open):
Mystical ecologies
Tuesday + Wednesday, 16. + 17.08.

A two-day seminar with Michael Marder, Ikerbasque Research Professor of Philosophy at the University of the Basque Country, Vitoria-Gasteiz (Spain)

In this intensive mini-seminar, Michael Marder will extend his line of research concerned with 'mystical ecologies' from the medieval Christian to the medieval Judaic tradition. In particular, we will discuss the way the Book of Zohar, the body of kabbalistic thought that emerged in Southern France and Southern Spain between 1100 and 1300, conceives the four classical elements: water, fire, air, and earth. Reconstructing the ecological vision that subtends this largely forgotten body of writings, we will come across a notion of divinity indistinguishable from questions of dwelling and exile, livability and sustainability, desire and sexual difference, distributed across the visible and the invisible cosmos.

Wednesday, 17.08 h 20, in Izba and on Radio Robida – Mystical ecologies: A conversation between Aljaž Škrlep and Michael Marder, as a conclusion of the seminar!

The two-day seminar is FREE: If you are interested in taking part to it , please let us know and we'll give you additional info. You can write to us an email: or a message our IG profile

All the events of the Academy of Margins will also be broadcasted live on Radio Robida

The whole program of the Academy of Margins is supported by the Region Friuli Venezia Giulia.

Ciao ciao, good night!
Robida Fam

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Hugs hugs hugs
Robida Fam