Post-Sustainability : Tragedy and Transformation book cover
1st Edition

Tragedy and Transformation

Edited By

John Foster

ISBN 9780367891282
Published December 13, 2019 by Routledge
208 Pages

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Book Description

The sustainability discourse and policy paradigm have failed to deliver. In particular, they have failed to avert the dangerously disruptive climate change which is now inevitable. So, if there is still a case for some transformed or revitalised version of sustainability, that case must now surely be made in full acknowledgment of deep-seated paradigm-failure to date. But if we really take ourselves to be living in a post-sustainable world, the issue of ‘what next?’ must be faced, and the hard questions no longer shirked. What options for political and personal action will remain open on a tragically degraded planet? How will economic and community life, political and social leadership and education be different in such a world? What will the geopolitics (of crisis, migration and conflict) look like? Where does widespread denial come from, how might it be overcome, and are there any grounds for hope that don’t rest on it?

The urgent challenge now is to confront such questions honestly. This collection of essays by thinkers from a diversity of fields including politics, philosophy, sociology, education and religion, makes a start.

This book was originally published as a special issue of Global Discourse.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction
John Foster

2. Paris: optimism, pessimism and realism
Brian Heatley

3. Transformation, adaptation and universalism: reply to Heatley
Nadine Andrews

4. After Development
Mike Hannis

5.  Reply to Hannis
Lawrence Wilde

6. Post-Capitalism, Post-Growth, Post-Consumerism
Ingolfur Bluhdorn

7. There never was a categorical imperative: reply to Blühdorn
Daniel Hausknost

8.  On the obsolescence of human beings in sustainable development
Ulrike Ehgartner, Patrick Gould and Marc Hudson

9. Apocalyptically blinded : reply to Ehgartner et al.
Nina Isabella Moeller and J. Martin Pedersen

10.  Beyond sustainability: hope in a spiritual revolution?
Rachel Bathurst

11. Reply to Bathurst
Rachel Muers

12.  Environmental education after sustainability: hope in the midst of tragedy
Panu Pihkala

13. Reply to Pihkala
Katie Carr

14. Education after sustainability
Steve Gough

15.  Learning and education after sustainability: reply to Gough
William Scott

16. On preparing for the great gift of community that climate disasters can give us
Rupert Read

17. Caring for the future? – a response to Rupert Read
John Foster

18. On letting go
John Foster

19.  The future: compassion, complacency or contempt? : reply to Foster
Rupert Read

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John Foster is a freelance writer and philosophy teacher, and an associate lecturer in the department of Politics, Philosophy and Religion at Lancaster University, UK. His relevant publications include Valuing Nature? (ed.) (Routledge, 1997), The Sustainability Mirage (Earthscan, 2008), and After Sustainability: Denial, Hope, Retrieval (Earthscan/Routledge, 2015).