Apocalyptic Harbinger or impetus for a new cosmopolitics? Latour & Beck


Apocalyptic Harbinger or impetus for a new cosmopolitics? Latour & Beck

Ulrich Beck und Bruno Latour zur Klimakatastrophe

Googled translation of intro:

They are in two points agreed: the catastrophic consequences of global warming are well documented, yet little is happening politically. We are faced with global problems, but do not have a global public and politicians. What is politically at stake?

Bruno Latour: One of the reasons why we feel so powerless, has to do with the large gap between the extent of the phenomenon and the ways of thinking and behavioral changes that are necessary to deal with this crisis. Is there a way to bridge the gap between this huge phenomenon and our tiny world in which we, as a rigid fish in the aquarium, to the announced catastrophes? How should we act rationally when it is nowhere a ground station, to which we can the radio saying “Houston, we have a problem” Send? Especially since it yes, is exactly like in the movie “Gravity”, no more Houston.

Ulrich Beck: I agree. But I want to reverse the perspective and ask what does global warming for us? Then we in fact see that the world has changed dramatically solely by the expectation of global warming. For example there is no longer such a thing as a purely natural weather event. No matter what kind of weather we have today, it is a coproduct of nature and society. We live in a nature-society-compound or, as they say, more recently, in the “Anthropocene”. You, Bruno, described nest co-produced this climate, this other paradigm of “human nature awareness” as “Gaia”. Even “climate change” is ultimately a zombie concept. To use it to individual natural disasters like the hurricane “Katrina” is tricky. We have the climate as a whole consider, as a result of human intervention in nature. At the same time, it is important how we respond to climate risks.

If you want to bridge the gap between global warming and global politics, then you have the “we” can imagine, that makes people feel the responsibility for the Anthropocene. Who is this “we” in climate policy?

Latour: For all those who want to bridge this gap, there is no way in politics. It’s pointless when eco-activists to the man on the street to persuade a guilty conscience, because he does not think enough globally. No one sees the earth on a global scale, and nobody looks at the ecosystem from a standpoint of nowhere, the scientists just as the citizens, the farmer just as the earthworm. Nature is not what you expect from a distant point of view in their entirety, but rather an accumulation of contradictory organisms. If we want serious policy, we need to talk about war and peace, revolution and revelation (“Apocalypse” means nothing else). Although it may be inappropriate to speak of doom – even more bizarre it would be to not take the theme of “We are living in apocalyptic times” seriously. Who does not feel that the world is in danger, is not likely to feel very much alive.


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