Collection of posts that speak to each other on a specific topic in Political Ecology.

April 4, 2019

Political Ecologies of Waste: Salvaged Livelihoods and Infra-structural Labour

by Benjamin Irvine. Solid waste is often seen as an environmental problem to be solved through change of behaviour and recycling. Political ecology can sharpen our analysis of the politics involved in the way materials move through the economy. Prospects for reducing the amount of solid waste generated and ambitions for a “circular economy” will entail qualitative transformations in patterns of material flows and organisation of labour. Deciphering the shape of these changes necessarily begins in the present conditions and struggles of waste workers.
March 28, 2019

The big picture – a political ecology comic essay

by Zully Rosadio When looking at a picture, asking “What does it NOT show?” is as important as observing what it shows. Complex realities, such as those of Samburu people, their livestock and wildlife in Kenya, appear by posing the key question ‘Why?’
March 15, 2019

The Loneliest Man on Earth

by Juan Francisco Moreno “Economic efficiency” in the use of natural resources without concern for the justice of its distribution, or the scale of its extraction is just bad fiction, just like the story of the internalization of externalities. Hopelessly, the exploitation of the Amazon has always entailed a process of dispossession of those whose existence doesn’t count for capital.
March 8, 2019

About Permaculture Songs and the Food (In)security Narrative

by Elena Louisa.. The promotion of food (in)security over decades has achieved to govern the way we think about alternatives to industrialised agriculture. Global famine is not a problem of food scarcity but a legacy of unequal power structures which are weaved into past and present agri-food systems. Agriculture based on permaculture can embrace localized food supply and be part of context-specific solutions to today's food challenges.
February 7, 2019

Reflections on Authoritarian Populism: Democracy, Technology and Ecological Destruction

By Alexander Dunlap. Using anarchist critique to unearth the ‘roots’ of authoritarian populism can offer a productive gateway for understanding the origins and continuation of socio-ecological and economic crises.
January 24, 2019

Should political ecology be populist?

Political ecology should take populism seriously, not only because of its authoritarian or regressive manifestations, but also for its transformative potential.
January 10, 2019

Headless populism and the political ecology of alienation

By Patrick Huff. Populism of the kind displayed by the Yellow Vests is a revolt against social and ecological alienation and an affirmation of collective popular power.
December 13, 2018

Environmental populisms – alongside and beyond (state) authority

By Kai Bosworth. Rather than (only) critiquing and dismissing existing uses of ‘the people’ as insufficient, political ecology could contribute to a new international populism capable of upholding climate justice.
November 29, 2018

Authoritarianism, populism and political ecology

By Amber Huff and Levi Van Sant. Based on a number of events convened under the Emancipatory Rural Politics Initiative, we introduce a series of interventions that explore how political ecologies can help us to better understand and confront the emergence of contemporary authoritarian populism.
April 3, 2018

Think Big Socialism and the spectre of degrowth: From one materialism to another (part II)

The Earth Wind and Fire issue of Jacobin is an environmentalism from the standpoint of the Progressive State. Economic growth is given and natural, it happens, social forces can slow it down or it can be accelerated. Nature on the other hand, bereft of value bearing physis, is a curious mix of a sum of externalities and an aesthetic experience. By Eric Pineault*
March 27, 2018

Think Big Socialism and the Spectre of Degrowth: The Ghost of Progress (Part I)

by Eric Pineault A fascinating aspect of Jacobin’s Earth Wind and Fire issue is the obsessive “presence of the absence” of Degrowth, of limits and the critique of scale. When mentioned, Degrowth is evoked to further convince the reader of the necessity and reasonableness of green Keynesianism and accelerated centrally planned solar communism. Writing after several prominent ecological and marxist thinkers that have produced thorough critiques of Jacobin’s ecomodernism, I want to explore this absent presence.
February 22, 2018

Reframing the Left Eco-Modernism vs. Orthodox Eco-Socialism Debate, or: Assessing the Transformation of the Value-Nature Nexus 

by Emanuele Leonardi Do we really need to choose either infinite (if alternative) growth or a steady-state economy? What if we may opt for shrinking entropic/industrial sectors and allowing for negentropic labor to freely flourish?
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