Identities in Transition

This seminar starts from the premise that many of the identities that individuals claim for themselves today in the Global North have been shaped by consumption practices fuelled by the high carbon economy. For example, contemporary class-based identities arise out of a (gendered and racialised) division of labour forged in the context of an oil fuelled economy and consumption practices.  This is witnessed in the specific consumption practices, values, lifestyles and modes of interpersonal relationships that are so central to the formation and reproduction of various class fractions, youth cultures, masculinities and femininities, ethnicities and contemporary LGBTQ identities.  Indeed, identity politics is a phenomena specific to the cultures of high consumption in the contemporary world.  We also know that there are links between poverty, racism and gender inequalities and the people most likely to experience the most detrimental impacts of climate change and resource scarcity. This workshop explores the role of the high carbon economy in shaping these social identities and questions how they might be reconfigured through the process of transition to a sustainable, low carbon future.

The seminar focuses on three interlinked themes:

  1. How contemporary identities have been shaped by the high carbon economy
  2. How those identities might change and be reconfigured through the process of transition to a sustainable, low carbon future
  3. What it means to identify with (movements for) sustainability transitions.

The programme for the event can be downloaded here: Identities in Transition Seminar Programme

The introduction for the day is also available: Identities in Transition Intro .  Other material presented at this seminar has been posted to the blog.