New article 'The Paradox of Anthropocene Inaction'
Madeleine Fagan publishes new article in International Political Sociology ’The Paradox of Anthropocene Inaction: Knowledge Production, Mobilization and the Securitization of Social Relations’ (open access)
This article argues that the Anthropocene produces a paradox when thinking about political mobilization. I show how the knowledge production practices that render the Anthropocene visible and actionable, including planetary boundaries, Earth System Science modeling of earth systems, and geological strata, also circulate a security rationality. This rationality is one that attempts to manage, co-opt, or productively direct processes of becoming, which limits possibilities for mobilization. A lens that assumes political mobilization is a function of increased knowledge, understanding, and evidence contributes to this problem. By starting instead with an understanding of possibilities for mobilization as emerging from social relations, the article highlights the way in which the security rationality circulated by Anthropocene knowledge production risks transforming those social relations into security relations. Netting the planet and the human together through the practices of calculation and representation that make the Anthropocene visible produces a decontextualized, disaggregated, and dispersed subject and so limits possibilities for collective political mobilization.