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Discourse and Sustainability


The Seminar Series "Discourse and Sustainability" is an international forum for presenting and discussing new, cutting edge, research on discourse and issues of sustainability, environment, climate change and ecology.

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Our next seminar takes place on 7th June 2024, 12 noon UK TIME, Bernhard Forchtner (University of Leicester) is talking about Sustainability and the far right? The case of degrowth’

Please register here for the next webinar in our series: https://events.teams.microsoft.com/event/9b904ef8-6de0-42ec-9aac-e1bbee26794e@490a8197-7b83-4f10-89b9-83189be3835e


Although environmental protection is regularly perceived as a ‘left-wing topic’, concerns over the natural environment by the far right have a long history. And while responses to such concerns are not necessarily ‘actually sustainable’, and often go hand in hand with climate-change obstruction, far-right actors do offer distinctive ecological imaginaries of communal life. Importantly, however, these imaginaries remain bound to an authoritarian and nativist agenda, one also clearly visible in their degrowth politics.

Being another area commonly associated with the left, this presentation discusses a case study of the main German far-right eco-magazine Die Kehre (The Turning) and its ‘ethno-ecological degrowth’ politics. It does so by conceptualising two chronotopes (Bakhtin), with the promethean chronotope (rejected) embodying environmental destruction and consumerist and rootless ways of living, while the idyllic one (affirmed) posits a reduction in energy throughput, small-scale production/exchange, limits and the building of bioregional communities.

The presentation concludes by highlighting how ethno-particularistic and non-universal criticisms of growth and capitalism partly overlap with better known, progressive degrowth positions.


Programme Summer Term 2024

9th February 2024, 11 am UK time (note the different time): Rescheduled talk, Ben Clarke (University of Gothenburg) Wanting for a better climate of discussion on the environment: Patterns of impoliteness, transitivity and Engagement in online newsreader comments that receive uncivil replies - catch up here: https://youtu.be/4oAxX0OCdco

16th February 2024, 12 noon UK TIME, Jonathan Joseph (University of Bristol): Resilience, sustainability and the crisis of the Liberal International Order - catch up here: https://youtu.be/0NQniwwGZR4

15th March 2024, 12 noon UK TIME, Kelsey Campolong (Ulster University): Neoliberalism in the Glasgow Climate Pact: Interdiscursivity and Faux-Sustainability at COP26  - catch up here: https://youtu.be/4DJsghVbWBk

19th April 2024, 12 noon UK TIME, Robert Poole (University of Alabama): Investigating ecological change and climate crisis through diachronic corpus-assisted ecolinguistics - catch up here: https://youtu.be/Tz3ilma3qWY

17th May 2024, 12 noon UK TIME, Nicolina Montesano Montessori (HU University of Applied Sciences Utrecht): Towards a systemic, social ecological justice: ways forward for Critical Policy Discourse Analysis. catch up here: https://youtu.be/mpZw_opqY0g

7th June 2024, 12 noon UK TIME, Bernhard Forchtner (University of Leicester): Sustainability and the far right? The case of degrowth’



The programme Winter Term 2023-2024:

20 October 2023, 12noon-1pm (note the different time) John Dryzek (University of Canberra) 'The Rise (and Fall?) of Grey Radicalism'

17 November 2023, 1-2pm, Tom Bartlett (University of Glasgow),  Just Transitions to sustainable practice - Is there a role for discourse analysts?

15 December 2023, 1-2pm, Anabella Carvalho (University of Minho), Political imaginaries and climate change

****POSTPONED**** Ben Clarke, (Göteborgs universitet), TBC