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No Future and No Past? How the Anthropocene Changes Environmentalist Narratives
Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Humanities.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-8878-1619
2014 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Cultural criticism since Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s time is usually characterized by a triadic structure: (1) It criticizes its own present. (2) It refers to a reconstructed, idealized past. (3) It searches for alternatives in order to create a better future. This structure has also been characteristic of most environmentalist narratives since the ‘ecological turn’ around 1970. At this time, the future seemed still to be open, so that solutions to environmen-tal problems would be achievable in time. Today, however, the insight that irreversible, human-induced environmental change on a geological scale has already taken place – that the Holocene has ended and we are now living in the ‘Anthropocene’ – fundamentally challenges the triadic structure of both environmentalist fiction and nonfiction. Based on recent examples from literature and film, I will therefore illustrate how the Anthropocene and its implications change not only environmental consciousness as a whole, but also contemporary environmentalist narratives.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2014.
National Category
Humanities Specific Literatures
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-27890OAI: oai:DiVA.org:miun-27890DiVA: diva2:935519
Conference
Rethinking Environmental Consciousness (Mid Sweden University, 5-8 December 2014).
Available from: 2016-06-10 Created: 2016-06-10 Last updated: 2016-06-29Bibliographically approved

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