Nature or technics? Sars-CoV-2, new materialisms and critique of the Anthropocene

Author/s Luigi Pellizzoni
Publishing Year 2022 Issue 2022/127 Language Italian
Pages 13 P. 94-106 File size 284 KB
DOI 10.3280/SUR2022-127008
DOI is like a bar code for intellectual property: to have more infomation click here

Below, you can see the article first page

If you want to buy this article in PDF format, you can do it, following the instructions to buy download credits

Article preview

FrancoAngeli is member of Publishers International Linking Association, Inc (PILA), a not-for-profit association which run the CrossRef service enabling links to and from online scholarly content.

The Sars-CoV-2 pandemic urges environmental sociology to reflect on the appropriate ap-proaches to account for it. For long the discipline was dominated by the debate between real-ism and constructivism, de facto privileging the latter. The "ontological turn" in the social and human sciences has brought to the fore anti-dualistic materialisms, on paper suited to deal with a socio-material hybrid such as Sars-CoV-2. However, the emancipatory implications drawn from the critique of modern dualisms are not reflected in a situation in which value extraction coincides ever more with a denial of the distinction between nature and technology. The debate over the Anthropocene provides a perspective useful to bring clarity.

Keywords: Sars-CoV-2, ontological turn, sustainable materialism, Anthropocene, environ-mental justice, care

  1. Pellizzoni L. (2021). Prefiguration, subtraction and emancipation. Social Movement Studies, 20(3): 364-379. DOI: 10.1080/14742837.2020.1752169
  2. Poupeau F. (2012). Les Mésaventures de la Critique. Paris: Raisons d’Agir.
  3. Schlosberg D., Coles R. (2016). The new environmentalism of everyday life: sustainability, material flows and movements. Contemporary Political Theory, 15(2): 160-181.
  4. Schlosberg D. (2019). From postmaterialism to sustainable materialism: the environmental politics of practice-based movements. Environmental Politics, special issue: 1-21 DOI: 10.1080/09644016.2019.1587215
  5. Povinelli E. (2016). Geontologies. Durham, NC: Duke University Press.
  6. Puig de la Bellacasa M. (2017). Matters of Care. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press.
  7. Scotti I. (2020). Vento forte. Eolico e professioni della green economy. Napoli: Orthotes.
  8. Smil V. (2017). Energy and Civilization: A History. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.
  9. Srnicek N., Williams A. (2015). Inventing the Future. London: Verso.
  10. Stengers I. (2017). Autonomy and the intrusion of Gaia. South Atlantic Quarterly, 116(2): 381-400. DOI: 10.1215/00382876-3829467
  11. Svampa M. (2019). Neo-Extractivism in Latin America. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
  12. Thacker E. (2007). The Global Genome. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.
  13. Vanloqueren G., Baret P.V. (2009). How agricultural research systems shape a technological regime that develops genetic engineering but locks out agroecological innovations. Research Policy, 38: 971-983.
  14. Wallace R. (2016). Big Farms Make Big Flu. New York: Monthly Review Press.
  15. Yates L. (2015). Rethinking prefiguration: alternatives, micropolitics and goals in social movements. Social Movement Studies, 14(1): 1-21. DOI: 10.1080/14742837.2013.870883
  16. Clark N., Yusoff K. (2017). Geosocial formations and the Anthropocene. Theory, Culture & Society, 34(2-3): 3-23. DOI: 10.1177/0263276416688946
  17. Clough S. (2003). Beyond Epistemology. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield.
  18. Coole D., Frost S. (eds.) (2010). New Materialisms. Durham, NC: Duke University Press.
  19. Daggett C.N. (2019). The Birth of Energy. Durham, NC: Duke University Press.
  20. Davidson D., Gross M. (eds.) (2018). The Oxford Handbook of Energy and Society. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  21. Acosta A. (2013). Extractivism and neoextractivism: two Sides of the same curse. In Lang. M., Mokrani D. (eds.). Beyond Development. Alternative Visions from Latin America. Amsterdam-Quito: Transnational Institute-Rosa Luxemburg Foundation.
  22. Aronowski L. (2021). Gas guzzling Gaia, or: a prehistory of climate change denialism. Critical Inquiry, 47(2): 306-327. DOI: 10.1086/712129
  23. Barad K. (2003). Posthumanist performativity: toward an understanding of how matter comes to matter. Signs, 28(3): 801-831. DOI: 10.1086/345321
  24. Barad K. (2007). Meeting the Universe Halfway. Durham, NC: Duke University Press.
  25. Bennett J. (2010). Vibrant Matter. Durham, NC: Duke University Press.
  26. Bonneuil C.; Fressoz J.B. (2016). The Shock of the Anthropocene. London: Verso.
  27. Bosi L., Zamponi L. (2015). Direct social actions and economic crises. Partecipazione e Conflitto, 8(2): 367-391.
  28. Breakthrough Institute (2015). An Ecomodernist Manifesto. -- Testo disponibile al sito:
  29. Buchanan A. (2011). Beyond Humanity? The Ethics of Biomedical Enhancement. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  30. Bulle S. (2018). Formes de vie, milieux de vie. La forme-occupation. Multitudes, 71: 168-175.
  31. Chakrabarty D. (2009). The climate of history: four theses. Critical Inquiry, 35 (Winter): 197-222. DOI: 10.1086/596640
  32. Clark N. (2011). Inhuman Nature. London: Sage.
  33. Clark N. (2013). Geoengineering and geologic politics. Environment and Planning A, 45(12): 2825-2832.
  34. Demeulenaere E., Piersante Y. (2020). In or out? Organisational dynamics within European ‘peasant seed’ movements facing opening-up institutions and policies. Journal of Peasant Studies, 47(4): 767-791. DOI: 10.1080/03066150.2020.1753704
  35. Escobar A. (2010). Postconstructivist political ecologies. In Redclift M., Woodgate G. (eds.) The International Handbook of Environmental Sociology. Second Edition. Cheltenham: Elgar.
  36. Ferdinand M. (2019). Une écologie décoloniale. Paris: Seuil.
  37. Fraser N. (2014). Behind Marx’s hidden abode: for an expanded conception of capitalism. New Left Review, 86 (Mar/Apr): 55-72.
  38. Geels F. (2002). Technological transitions as evolutionary reconfiguration processes: a multi-level perspective and a case-study. Research Policy, 31: 1257-1274.
  39. Gentili D. (2018). Crisi come arte di governo. Macerata: Quodlibet.
  40. Goldman M., Schurman R. (2000). Closing the “Great Divide”: new social theory on society and nature. Annual Review of Sociology, 26: 563-584.
  41. Gross M., Mautz R. (2015). Renewable Energies. London: Routledge.
  42. Grosz E. (2011). Becoming Undone. Durham, NC: Duke University Press.
  43. Gudynas E. (2010). Si eres tan progresista ¿Por qué destruyes la naturaleza? Neoextractivismo, izquierda y alternativas. Ecuador Debate (CAAP-Quito), 79: 61-81.
  44. Hannigan J. (1995). Environmental Sociology. London: Routledge.
  45. Holbraad M., Pedersen M.A. (2017). The Ontological Turn: An Anthropological Exposition. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
  46. Keck F. (2020). Asian Reservoirs. Durham, NC: Duke University Press.
  47. Lakoff A. (2017). Unprepared. Global Health in a Time of Emergency. Oakland, CA: University of California Press.
  48. Latour B. (2005). Reassembling the Social. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  49. Latour B. (2000). Politiche della natura. Milano: Cortina.
  50. Latour B. (2017). Facing Gaia. Cambridge: Polity Press.
  51. Latour B. (2018). Tracciare la rotta. Come orientarsi in politica. Milano: Cortina.
  52. Lovelock J. (1979). Gaia: A New Look at Life on Earth. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  53. Lynch M. (2017). STS, symmetry and post-truth. Social Studies of Science, 47(4): 593-599. DOI: 10.1177/0306312717720308
  54. Malm A., Hornborg A. (2014). The geology of mankind? A critique of the Anthropocene narrative. The Anthropocene Review, 1(1): 62-69. DOI: 10.1177/2053019613516291
  55. Martinez-Alier J. (2009). Ecologia dei poveri. Milano: Jaca Book.
  56. Mbembe A. (2016). Necropolitica. Verona: Ombre Corte.
  57. Meyer J. (2015). Engaging the Everyday. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.
  58. Mitchell T. (2011). Carbon Democracy. London: Verso.
  59. Mol A. (1999). Ontological politics. A word and some questions. In Law J., Hassard J. (eds.) Actor-Network Theory and After. Oxford: Blackwell.
  60. Moore J. (2017). Antropocene o capitalocene? Verona: Ombre Corte.
  61. Mouffe C. (2013). Agonistics. London: Verso.
  62. Norgaard R. (1994). Development Betrayed. London: Routledge.
  63. O’Malley P. (2010). Resilient subjects: uncertainty, warfare and liberalism. Economy and Society, 39(4): 488-509. DOI: 10.1080/03085147.2010.510681
  64. Osti G., Pellizzoni L. (a cura di) (2018). Energia e innovazione tra flussi globali e circuiti locali. Trieste: EUT.
  65. Pellizzoni L. (2016). Ontological Politics in a Disposable World: The New Mastery of Nature. London: Routledge.

Luigi Pellizzoni, Natura o tecnica? Sars-Cov-2, nuovi materialismi e critica dell’Antropocene in "SOCIOLOGIA URBANA E RURALE" 127/2022, pp 94-106, DOI: 10.3280/SUR2022-127008