Spring 2014: Fisher Abstract

Connecting Environmentalism to Democracy through Environmental Stewardship
Dana R. Fisher

Associate Professor
Department of Sociology
University of Maryland

What is the relationship between environmentalism and democracy under the conditions of modernity? How does environmental stewardship broker these connections? In recent years, as the global economy has destabilized, the overall quality of the global environment has also worsened, including the Deep Water Horizon Oil Spill, the Fukushima nuclear disaster, and this year’s Elk River chemical spill in West Virginia, to name a few. At the same time, citizens continue to serve as stewards of their local environments, conserving, managing, monitoring, advocating for, and educating the public about the local environment. Drawing on research conducted in New York City, Philadelphia, and Washington, DC, this talk explores the forms environmental stewardship takes and what it means to the future of democracy in America in the context of reflexive modernization.

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