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With the universal human under suspicion in modern philosophy and in anthropology, where do we stand in the Anthropocene that seems to place the human back at the center of things? Serres uses the marine world to construct his understandings of “human” and “world.” This chapter uses Serres to interpret two films about the ocean and its creatures ethnographically (one, a tale of progress in the biography of mariner Jacques Cousteau, and the other, an exploration of human/animal relationality in an encounter with an octopus). As the world returns to the “human after the human,” it can no longer count on the environment to support its reproductive capacity, longevity, agriculture, or air. Serres’s work points toward a more planetary consciousness and toward an understanding of the human as one element among many in what he calls “the great story of the Universe.”

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