Introduction by LJ Frank
“And they stand still and watch the potatoes float by, listen to the screaming pigs being killed in a ditch and covered with quicklime, watch the mountains of oranges slop down to a putrefying ooze; and in the eyes of the people there is a failure and in the eyes of the hungry there is a growing wrath. In the souls of the people the grapes of wrath are filling and growing heavy, growing heavy for the vintage.” Chapter Twenty-Five, Grapes of Wrath, John Steinbeck
Survival migrancy. A carry over from the 20th century, epitomized in John Steinbeck’s Grapes of Wrath published in 1939.
In part, it’s the (ancient) search for a minimal livable condition that transcends borders and can occur within one country where people move from one location to another, for the sake of a better living – economically, socially, health wise, or even politically.
The world in which we live is rapidly changing. Life was never fair, never equal. No one has the same ability – intellectually, emotionally, or physically. The health of the majority of people in today’s world appears to be a privilege.
How does a man, a woman, a child, whatever age, survive in a perceived and actual un-survivable situation? What will a person do for an opportunity to stay alive, to live another day, another hour?
Survival migrancy includes migrating from one country to another whereby the “dichotomy of economic survival and asylum seekers” overlap and the definition of refugee becomes convoluted and blurred.
And then there’s the fact of pollution, both climate and water, above and below ground. Climate change, the deployment of artificial intelligence over the corporate calculated “unaffordable workers” leading to further exacerbation of resources and the effect of changing to minimalist lifestyles and the devaluing of basic living standards for masses of people…the result, physical and emotional instability, that looms on the horizon.
The person who wishes to survive, sheds their fears, and takes a chance. What do they have to lose that they may haven’t already lost?
Migrancy survival involves a person who desires to stay alive in a relatively stable economic, social, political environment – an environment that’s perceived as an opportunity to live above the violence of poverty and in which adaptation, compassion, and cooperation takes on new meaning.
With inevitable rising sea levels, droughts, adverse climate conditions, new plaques, advancing nutritional issues, war, all coupled with new high technological inventions transforming both living and workplace, who will be the migrants of the future searching for a place in which to survive? What will the tools of adaptation look like?
The following photos are simply a glimpse at the surface of survival migrancy…