A climate for feminist intervention: Feminist science studies and climate change

Andrei L. Israel, Carolyn Elizabeth Sachs

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

20 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

For many years, climate change discourse was dominated by a technicalscientific framing based on modernist notions of objective knowledge, control, and efficiency. In recent years, a robust alternative discourse of climate justice has emerged, challenging mainstream adaptation and mitigation policies as reinforcing capitalist, colonialist, and patriarchal power structures and further marginalizing already vulnerable peoples and communities. But while the climate justice movement has provided a sorely needed corrective to climate change discourse, it has been hampered by addressing only policy issues without critically examining the scientific knowledge on which climate change discourse is based. Drawing on critiques of science and technology from ecofeminism and feminist science studies, we argue that scientific knowledge is always already structured by social power relations before it ever enters into policy discussions. In place of the (illusory) God-trick of absolute knowledge and control of the global climate system, we use Haraway’s ideas of feminist objectivity, partial perspective, relations between species, and cyborg standpoints to situate and pluralize knowledge about climate change. This intervention opens up discursive space for multiple, partial knowledge about the climate system, all of which can be held accountable to their ethical and political implications. This pluralization of knowledge allows feminists to recognize and support many forms and venues of climate change-related activism, moving beyond the impasses of international and national political negotiations. Thus, far from dismissing climate change, a feminist critique of climate science makes possible a range of interventions that can more effectively promote social justice and ecological health.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationResearch, Action and Policy
Subtitle of host publicationAddressing the Gendered Impacts of Climate Change
PublisherSpringer Netherlands
Pages33-51
Number of pages19
ISBN (Electronic)9789400755185
ISBN (Print)9789400755178
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2013

Fingerprint

climate change
climate
ecofeminism
social justice
power relations
science and technology
science
global climate
mitigation
policy
justice

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)

Cite this

Israel, A. L., & Sachs, C. E. (2013). A climate for feminist intervention: Feminist science studies and climate change. In Research, Action and Policy: Addressing the Gendered Impacts of Climate Change (pp. 33-51). Springer Netherlands. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-007-5518-5_3
Israel, Andrei L. ; Sachs, Carolyn Elizabeth. / A climate for feminist intervention : Feminist science studies and climate change. Research, Action and Policy: Addressing the Gendered Impacts of Climate Change. Springer Netherlands, 2013. pp. 33-51
@inbook{eaec4ba302b64d7dbd85a5d5907af067,
title = "A climate for feminist intervention: Feminist science studies and climate change",
abstract = "For many years, climate change discourse was dominated by a technicalscientific framing based on modernist notions of objective knowledge, control, and efficiency. In recent years, a robust alternative discourse of climate justice has emerged, challenging mainstream adaptation and mitigation policies as reinforcing capitalist, colonialist, and patriarchal power structures and further marginalizing already vulnerable peoples and communities. But while the climate justice movement has provided a sorely needed corrective to climate change discourse, it has been hampered by addressing only policy issues without critically examining the scientific knowledge on which climate change discourse is based. Drawing on critiques of science and technology from ecofeminism and feminist science studies, we argue that scientific knowledge is always already structured by social power relations before it ever enters into policy discussions. In place of the (illusory) God-trick of absolute knowledge and control of the global climate system, we use Haraway’s ideas of feminist objectivity, partial perspective, relations between species, and cyborg standpoints to situate and pluralize knowledge about climate change. This intervention opens up discursive space for multiple, partial knowledge about the climate system, all of which can be held accountable to their ethical and political implications. This pluralization of knowledge allows feminists to recognize and support many forms and venues of climate change-related activism, moving beyond the impasses of international and national political negotiations. Thus, far from dismissing climate change, a feminist critique of climate science makes possible a range of interventions that can more effectively promote social justice and ecological health.",
author = "Israel, {Andrei L.} and Sachs, {Carolyn Elizabeth}",
year = "2013",
month = "1",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1007/978-94-007-5518-5_3",
language = "English (US)",
isbn = "9789400755178",
pages = "33--51",
booktitle = "Research, Action and Policy",
publisher = "Springer Netherlands",
address = "Netherlands",

}

Israel, AL & Sachs, CE 2013, A climate for feminist intervention: Feminist science studies and climate change. in Research, Action and Policy: Addressing the Gendered Impacts of Climate Change. Springer Netherlands, pp. 33-51. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-007-5518-5_3

A climate for feminist intervention : Feminist science studies and climate change. / Israel, Andrei L.; Sachs, Carolyn Elizabeth.

Research, Action and Policy: Addressing the Gendered Impacts of Climate Change. Springer Netherlands, 2013. p. 33-51.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

TY - CHAP

T1 - A climate for feminist intervention

T2 - Feminist science studies and climate change

AU - Israel, Andrei L.

AU - Sachs, Carolyn Elizabeth

PY - 2013/1/1

Y1 - 2013/1/1

N2 - For many years, climate change discourse was dominated by a technicalscientific framing based on modernist notions of objective knowledge, control, and efficiency. In recent years, a robust alternative discourse of climate justice has emerged, challenging mainstream adaptation and mitigation policies as reinforcing capitalist, colonialist, and patriarchal power structures and further marginalizing already vulnerable peoples and communities. But while the climate justice movement has provided a sorely needed corrective to climate change discourse, it has been hampered by addressing only policy issues without critically examining the scientific knowledge on which climate change discourse is based. Drawing on critiques of science and technology from ecofeminism and feminist science studies, we argue that scientific knowledge is always already structured by social power relations before it ever enters into policy discussions. In place of the (illusory) God-trick of absolute knowledge and control of the global climate system, we use Haraway’s ideas of feminist objectivity, partial perspective, relations between species, and cyborg standpoints to situate and pluralize knowledge about climate change. This intervention opens up discursive space for multiple, partial knowledge about the climate system, all of which can be held accountable to their ethical and political implications. This pluralization of knowledge allows feminists to recognize and support many forms and venues of climate change-related activism, moving beyond the impasses of international and national political negotiations. Thus, far from dismissing climate change, a feminist critique of climate science makes possible a range of interventions that can more effectively promote social justice and ecological health.

AB - For many years, climate change discourse was dominated by a technicalscientific framing based on modernist notions of objective knowledge, control, and efficiency. In recent years, a robust alternative discourse of climate justice has emerged, challenging mainstream adaptation and mitigation policies as reinforcing capitalist, colonialist, and patriarchal power structures and further marginalizing already vulnerable peoples and communities. But while the climate justice movement has provided a sorely needed corrective to climate change discourse, it has been hampered by addressing only policy issues without critically examining the scientific knowledge on which climate change discourse is based. Drawing on critiques of science and technology from ecofeminism and feminist science studies, we argue that scientific knowledge is always already structured by social power relations before it ever enters into policy discussions. In place of the (illusory) God-trick of absolute knowledge and control of the global climate system, we use Haraway’s ideas of feminist objectivity, partial perspective, relations between species, and cyborg standpoints to situate and pluralize knowledge about climate change. This intervention opens up discursive space for multiple, partial knowledge about the climate system, all of which can be held accountable to their ethical and political implications. This pluralization of knowledge allows feminists to recognize and support many forms and venues of climate change-related activism, moving beyond the impasses of international and national political negotiations. Thus, far from dismissing climate change, a feminist critique of climate science makes possible a range of interventions that can more effectively promote social justice and ecological health.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84896909629&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=84896909629&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1007/978-94-007-5518-5_3

DO - 10.1007/978-94-007-5518-5_3

M3 - Chapter

AN - SCOPUS:84896909629

SN - 9789400755178

SP - 33

EP - 51

BT - Research, Action and Policy

PB - Springer Netherlands

ER -

Israel AL, Sachs CE. A climate for feminist intervention: Feminist science studies and climate change. In Research, Action and Policy: Addressing the Gendered Impacts of Climate Change. Springer Netherlands. 2013. p. 33-51 https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-007-5518-5_3