SIU students towards the SIU Morris Library in a funeral casket walking honor of countless species of animals that have gone extinct on Thursday, April 22, 2021. (Monica Sharma | @ms_clicks)
SIU students towards the SIU Morris Library in a funeral casket walking honor of countless species of animals that have gone extinct on Thursday, April 22, 2021.

Monica Sharma | @ms_clicks

SIU Art and Activism class celebrates Earth Day with a funeral procession

April 22, 2021

SIU professor Cade Bursell and students from the Art and Activism course carried a funeral casket to remember the countless species that have gone extinct because of the effects of climate change.

The walk started at the Mass Communications Building and stopped in various places on campus where the participants recited the names of different species that have gone extinct. 

Ash Durrance, a graduate student in creative writing (poetry), shared poems dedicated to those species.

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Cade Bursell, professor and a member believes that the program will play an important role in communicating a strong message about the effects of climate change. 

“It’s the collective idea of us to spend the day celebrating Earth Day in a way that is powerful by mourning. Grief is a very powerful reaction that you can’t deny,” Bursell said.

“The climate change that we are experiencing is happening right now, it is not something that is going to happen after 20 or 50 years,” Claire Talbert, a sophomore studying geography and environmental resources, said.

Participants carried postcards to send to different government officials such as congressmen “I am hoping that people will send them and the officials will respond to that and also get inspired to make changes,” Talbert added.

Events participants also focused on divestment from fossil fuels. “We don’t want our money to go to fossil fuels because it is the large contributor to climate change,” Talbert said.

Staff Photographer Monica Sharma can be reached at [email protected] or on Instagram at @msclicks.

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    Candace DavisApr 23, 2021 at 10:14 am

    I wish I would have been on campus to witness this solemn march. I didn’t hear about it before seeing this picture. Thank you for bringing attention to the alarming crisis of mass extinctions in this creative way.

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