• I, River?: New materialism, riparian non-human agency and the scale of democratic reform

    Author(s):
    James Smith (see profile)
    Date:
    2016
    Group(s):
    Environmental Humanities, Philosophy
    Subject(s):
    Environment, Environmental history, Environmental humanities, Political philosophy
    Item Type:
    Article
    Tag(s):
    Democracy, Personification, Water history, Water policy
    Permanent URL:
    http://dx.doi.org/10.17613/M6747B
    Abstract:
    This article is a discussion of the “discourse on the unthinkable” surrounding potential future democratic engagements with rivers as non-human persons or natural objects. In the context of the Asia–Pacific region, this article suggests that the developments in material philosophy entitled “new materialism” are essential tools in the reconceptualisation of rivers as democratic entities but that local socio-historical conditions must also be taken into the account. In order to make its case, the article not only surveys the context for considering rivers as non-human persons in a juridical context but also discusses the new material context that assists modern democracies in the renegotiation of the demos that forms the body politic of democracy – often in the face of neoliberal exploitation and a legacy of extremes in instrumentalism. The article argues that the incorporation of water in the democratic project of enfranchisement is an essential exercise born of many Western beliefs and ideals but articulated uniquely at a regional and national level.
    Metadata:
    Published as:
    Journal article    
    Status:
    Published
    Last Updated:
    1 month ago
    License:
    All Rights Reserved

    Downloads

    Item Name: pdf i_river_new_materialism_riparian_non-hum.pdf
      Download View in browser
    Activity: Downloads: 6