While “Planet of the Humans” makes a few valid points about over-reliance on techno-fixes in general, and the fundamental flaws of biomass energy in particular, it does a serious disservice to those seeking to bring a more systemic and forward-looking approach into the climate movement.
The pandemic has exposed irreconcilable contradictions in the entity of the nation-state and the capitalist world system.
Without vigilant analysis of the present moment and rigorous critique, we will be risking our entire political freedoms for decades to come. If the historical moment is not acted upon, the crisis will become a catastrophe, and the catastrophe could take us back to an even darker age.
The domination of nature has reached crisis proportions under capitalism, and viral outbreaks are yet another ecological problem. There are ways that we can prevent the spread of these pathogens: wash your hands, disinfect your phone, don’t touch your face and self-quarantine if you exhibit symptoms of being sick. But without addressing the root causes of these issues—capitalism and the idea of dominating nature—these sorts of problems will only worsen. Social ecology offers an alternative vision of what an ecological and socially just world might look like – a world organized around care instead of domination that fosters a reharmonization of humanity and non-human nature.
We are pleased to announce the foundation of the Institute of Social Ecology and Communalism in France. Founded in February 2020, the aim of the Institute is to promote the ideas of social ecology and help build a movement in France and elsewhere in the francophone world. If you’re based in a French-speaking country, get involved! Their foundation statement is available below in English, and here in French. We look forward to collaborating together!
The Institute for Social Ecology would like to thank Lincoln Van Sluytman, who is stepping down from our Board of Directors. Since joining the board in 2014, Lincoln’s wisdom, experience, and generosity have enriched our organization and brought important insights and perspectives to our work.
Join us online June 19-24, for our 2020 ISE Intensive – 5 days of exploring social-ecological transformation in theory and practice. Our Intensives are always an inspiring experience of radical education, political strategizing, comradely networking, and utopian visioning – all welcome!
The ISE has had an exciting summer and fall full of events! Our Winter 2019 newsletter showcases our recent and upcoming activities, including the relaunch of Harbinger: A Journal of Social Ecology, our various online courses, info on our next in-person Intensive in June, and updates from our staff and faculty.
Although some have been surprised by the far right’s enthusiasm for the work of Ted Kaczynski and John Zerzan, social ecology has long warned of both the problematic philosophical assumptions of primitivism and ecofascism. Steve Ongerth describes 6 points of ideological overlap between primitivism and ecofascism.
We are excited to announce a new online seminar on Frankfurt School Critical Theory, the famously rich yet challenging body of ideas that has been a foundational influence on social ecology. This seven-session seminar will introduce the core concepts, thinkers, and texts of the tradition, and explore its continued relevance for contemporary political and theoretical questions.