published on November 8, 2016
David Maggs, John Robinson
Recalibrating the Anthropocene
Sustainability in an Imaginary World
Geologically speaking, the Anthropocene marks the end of the Holocene period, a time of great planetary stability. Conceptually speaking,
the Anthropocene marks the end of the Modernist period, a time of great epistemic stability. As scientific framings of sustainability strain under anthropocenic realities, reconceptualizing sustainability may be necessary. By positioning human/nature relations beyond Modernist dichotomies underpinning scientific discourse, the implications of the Anthropocene shift from methodological to ontological, dislodging sustainability from its traditional scientific foundations. To this, we propose new stability through four interlinked approaches to sustainability’s complex challenges, offering a framework for thought and action beyond Modernist framings of sustainability and opening essential roles to often-marginalized interpretive social sciences and humanities.