Horcruxology II - Objects of Future Pasts and Prenatal Life

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Niels Wilde Langballe


Postdoctoral Fellow


Aarhus University


DKK 1,194,579




Reintegration Fellowships


The project develops a conceptual framework for what happens when the future can be said to haunt the present. How do present objects of various kinds hint at future scenarios or generate specific future realities? When Greta Thunberg for example said that the eyes of all future generations are upon you, in what way can we (the living) be said to host the unborn who do not yet exist?


Scholars have recently paid attention to the future in different ways in light of global warming, imagining alternative futures, projecting better scenarios or even societies but it remains theoretically unclear how present objects in a general sense provide clues about the future and in what sense the future is haunting the present.


I develop af conceptual framework - what I call orbuculum ontology (objects hinting at the future) through an omen phenomenology (how do the signs show themselves?) by drawing on (environmental) deconstruction, hauntology and object-oriented ontology. I show how events can either prevent future scenarios or expand or shrink the wiggle room for action in future realities generated by orbuculums.

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