Non abbiate paura. Passiamo dall'aracnofobia all'aracnofilia percependo nuovi fili di connettività, o affrontiamo l'eterno silenzio dell'estinzione.
Do not be afraid. Let us move from arachnophobia to arachnophilia by sensing new threads of connectivity, or else face the eternal silence of extinction.
Nome comune: /
Nome scientifico: Nigma flavescens (Wlackenaer, 1830)
Global distribution (WSC 2021): Europe, Caucasus, Iran
Caratteristiche anatomiche: Ragno di piccole dimensioni, dai 2,5 ai 4 mm di corpo, ha una colorazione che va dal marrone giallognolo al rossiccio, con un disegno vagamente lanceolato più chiaro sull’opistosoma. Fa parte dei ragni cribellati o muniti di cribello, una struttura laminare simile ad un pettine situata al termine dell’opistosoma vicino alle filiere, che produce un tipo di seta più grezza e appiccicosa.
Comportamento: Questi ragni, frequenti su alberi frondosi, costruiscono una tela definita a “tenda da campeggio” sulla pagina superiore di foglie grandi e dai bordi rialzati, e all’ingresso di questa “tenda” fissano della seta cribbellata in grado di bloccare prede anche di notevole grandezza rispetto al ragno, come cimici verdi.
Anatomical features: a small spider, 2.5 to 4 mm in body size, it is yellowish-brown to reddish in colour, with a vaguely lanceolate pattern that is lighter on the opisthosoma. It is one of the cribellate spiders or cribellated spiders, a laminar comb-like structure at the end of the opisthosoma near the filaments, which produces a coarser, stickier type of silk.
Behaviour: These spiders, which are common on leafy trees, build a web called a "camping tent" on the upper side of large, raised leaves, and at the entrance to this "tent" attach cribbellate silk which can capture prey of even greater size than the spider, such as green bugs.
Nobody lives everywhere; everybody lives somewhere. Nothing is connected to everything; everything is connected to something. This spider is in place, has a place, and yet is named for intriguing travels elsewhere. This spider will help me with returns, and with roots and routes.
—Donna Haraway, Tentacular Thinking: Anthropocene, Capitalocene,
What happens when human exceptionalism and bounded individualism, those old saws of Western philosophy and political economics, become unthinkable in the best sciences, whether natural or social? Seriously unthinkable: not available to think with. Biological sciences have been especially potent in fermenting notions about all the mortal inhabitants of the Earth since the imperializing eighteenth century. Homo sapiens — the Human as species, the Anthropos as the human species,Modern Man — was a chief product of these knowledge practices. What happens when the best biologies of the twenty-first century cannot do their job with bounded individuals plus contexts, when organisms plus environments, or genes plus whatever they need, no longer sustain the overflowing richness of biological knowledges, if they ever did? What happens when organisms plus environments can hardly be remembered for the same reasons that even Western-indebted people can no longer figure themselves as individuals and societies of individuals in human-only histories? Surely such a transformative time on Earth must not be named the Anthropocene!
With all the unfaithful offspring of the sky gods, with my littermates who find a rich wallow in multispecies muddles, I want to make a critical and joyful fuss about these matters. I want to stay with the trouble, and the only way I know to do that is in generative joy, terror, and collective thinking.
My first demon familiar in this task will be a spider, Pimoa cthulhu, who lives under stumps in the redwood forests of Sonoma and Mendocino Counties, near where I live in North Central California.3 Nobody lives everywhere; everybody lives somewhere. Nothing is connected to everything; everything is connected to something.4 This spider is in place, has a place, and yet is named for intriguing travels elsewhere. This spider will help me with returns, and with roots and routes.5 The eight-legged tentacular arachnid that I appeal to gets her generic name from the language of the Goshute people of Utah and her specific name from denizens of the depths, from the abyssal and elemental entities, called chthonic.6 The chthonic powers of Terra infuse its tissues everywhere, despite the civilizing efforts of the agents of sky gods to astralize them and set up chief Singletons and their tame committees of multiples or subgods, the One and the Many. Making a small change in the biologist’s taxonomic spelling, from cthulhu to chthulu, with renamed Pimoa chthulu I propose a name for an elsewhere and elsewhen that was, still is,and might yet be: the Chthulucene. I remember that tentacle comes from the Latin tentaculum, meaning “feeler,” and tentare, meaning “to feel” and “to try”; and I know that my leggy spider has many-armed allies. Myriad tentacles will be needed to tell the story of the Chthulucene.