Challenging the Human X Environment Framework

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Challenges to the idea of the human raised in posthumanist inquiry present both problems and opportunities for understanding and organizing an environmental politics able to transform environmental degradation and address global climate change. This essay explains how arguments about human embodiment, symbiosis, and human embeddedness in social and material habitats have led to a reconceptualization of the human as well as the environment. Next, the essay elaborates two specific approaches— actor network theory and object-oriented ontology—through which the conceptual diminution or displacement of the human elucidates how activities in our daily lives ramify into environmental degradation and global climate change. It explains how the enormity of these problems makes it difficult to imagine how to redress them politically, leading to political apathy, and it makes some tentative proposals about how to overcome these difficulties.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationThe Oxford Handbook of Environmental Political Theory
EditorsTeena Gabrielson, Cheryl Hall, John M Meyer, David Scholsberg
Number of pages13
StatePublished - 2016


  • posthumanism
  • actor network theory
  • object-oriented ontology
  • political apathy
  • environmental politics


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