Climate Change and Intergenerational Justice: 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Climate Change and Intergenerational Justice

1st Edition

By Tracey Skillington


144 pages | 1 B/W Illus.

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Hardback: 9781138222977
pub: 2019-03-11
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Synonymous with catastrophe and destructive tendencies, the Anthropocene provokes reflection on the limits of existing applications of ideas of responsibility, ecological agency and democratic justice. Youth campaigners, in particular, make emerging insights on the Anthropocene of central importance to an intersubjectively generated redefinition of the just society of the future. Given their span of affectedness, escalating rates of greenhouse gas emissions shape the ecological circumstances of generations to come and implicate them in harm relations they had no hand in creating. The realization is that human-inspired climate-destructive practices reverberate across plural time frames, thereby raising serious questions about the value of conventional interpretations of the copresence of sources of climate harm and their effects on the health and environmental living standards of all peoples. If injuries provoked by environmental degradation emerge across multiple time frames and affect generations differentially, where do we draw the boundaries of the just society, and how do we identify its most relevant subjects?

This book explores how such questions have ignited one of the most important debates on democratic justice in recent years – that between generations. For mobilized youth and future justice coalitions campaigning internationally, expanding resource inequalities (regionally and intergenerationally) are fundamentally issues of unfair exclusions and asymmetries in relations of power between generations. The book offers a comprehensive overview of new insights being generated through such debate on the limitations of democratic presentism, as well as current institutional applications of civil and human rights norms. It assesses overall how the metapolitical relevance of modernity’s democratic project is being creatively redefined in terms more relevant to Anthropocene futures.

Table of Contents

Introduction: Thinking Differently About the Future

1. Relations Between Generations as Relations of Domination

2. Changing the Evaluative Discourse on Climate Change: The Campaign for Future Justice

3. Are Future Peoples the Bearers of Present Rights?

4. Balancing Generational Sovereignty With a Future Ethics

5. Publicly Embedded Constitutions: Legislating for Present and Future Generations

6. A Deeper Framework of Intergenerational Justice

About the Author

Tracey Skillington is Lecturer in Sociology in the School of Sociology & Philosophy, University College Cork. She is the author of Climate Justice & Human Rights (2017) and Guest Editor of a special issue of the European Journal of Social Theory , titled ‘Perspectives on Climate Change’ (8[3], 2015).

About the Series

Sociological Futures

Sociological Futures aims to be a flagship for new and innovative theories, methods and approaches to sociological issues and debates and ‘the social’ in the 21st century. This series of monographs and edited collections was inspired by vibrant wealth of BSA symposia on a wide variety of sociological themes. Edited by a team of experienced sociological researchers, and supported by the BSA, it covers a wide range of topics related to sociology and sociological research and will feature contemporary work that is theoretically and methodologically innovative, has local or global reach, as well as work that engages or reengages with classic debates in sociology bringing new perspectives to important and relevant topics.

The BSA is the professional association for sociologists and sociological research in the United Kingdom, with its extensive network of members, study groups and forums, and its dynamic programme of events. The Association engages with topics ranging from auto/biography to youth, climate change to violence against women, alcohol to sport, and Bourdieu to Weber. This book series represents the fruits of sociological enquiry, reaching a global audience, and offering a publication outlet for sociologists at all career and publishing stages, from the well-established to emerging sociologists, BSA or non-BSA members, from all parts of the world.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Sociology / General