For the last 50 years environmentalism has warned of the dire consequences of abusing and exploiting the planet’s resources, conjuring future wastelands of depletion and chaos. But it has also generated rich new ideas about how humans might live better with nature.
Green utopianism is undergoing a major change in response to the threat of climate change and the emergence of a new era, the Anthropocene. But it has not disappeared. Using examples from science fiction and popular nonfiction texts, Lisa Garforth of Newcastle University explores how visions for a more sustainable future have changed since the 1970s and what green hopes for the 21st century might look like.
Lisa Garforth is a Senior Lecturer in Sociology at Newcastle University and author of Green Utopias: Environmental Hope Before and After Nature (Polity). She is currently working with researchers at the University of York and Aberystwyth University on the AHRC-funded project Unsettling Scientific Stories The project explores the history of past futures and how contemporary audiences engage with scientific possibilities through fiction and narrative.