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Imagining and engaging post-capitalist natures through comic books

ContributorsFlorin, Ianorcid
Presented atPOLLEN Biennial Conference, Brighton (Angleterre), 22-25 septembre 2020
Publication date2020
Abstract

Following works on the intersection of neoliberalism, capitalism and non-human worlds, a growing number of critical social scientists call for a discussion about alternatives to the capitalist production of nature. This paper addresses how certain comic books formulate and circulate these alternatives, by acting as subversive medias that help think about and engage with post-capitalist natures. I draw on the increasingly strong scholarship on political comics in geography to explore how discourses of popular cultural culture can challenge dominant narratives by opening up new spaces of imagination. I use Alessandro Pignochi's Petit traité d'écologiesauvagediptych and La recomposition des mondes as case studies. The former follows a Jivaro anthropologist who travels throughout a fictional France where animist relations have taken over the western conception of nature. The latter recounts Pignochi's stay at the Notre Dame des Landes Zone à Défendre, notably narrating his experience of resisting forced evacuation and discovering grassroots agriculture. First, I show how these comics use the character of the anthropologist to question vocabularies and practice constitutive of capitalist natures. Second, I look at how Pignochi depicts a western society where subject to subject relations between humans and non-humans replace a subject to object relation with nature. Third, I analyze how comics provoke empathy with alternative ways of relating to nature, by humorously underlying the absurdity of dominant world-views and helping us imagine other possible worlds

Keywords
  • Comic books
  • Comics
  • Bande dessinée
  • Popular Geopolitics
  • Post-capitalism
Citation (ISO format)
FLORIN, Ian. Imagining and engaging post-capitalist natures through comic books. In: POLLEN Biennial Conference. Brighton (Angleterre). 2020.
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