Anthropocene or Capitalocene? : Nature, History, and the Crisis of Capitalism

The Earth has reached a tipping point. Runaway climate change, the sixth great extinction of planetary life, the acidification of the oceans - all point toward an era of unprecedented turbulence in humanity's relationship within the web of life. But just what is that relationship, and how do we make sense of this extraordinary transition?

J. Paul Neeley

J. Paul is a London based designer and researcher with expertise in Speculative Design, Service Design, Design Research, and Strategy.

All author's posts
Gemma Jones

Interdisciplinary cultural researcher and strategist specialising in semiotics and futures thinking

All author's posts

June 25, 2021


The Earth has reached a tipping point. Runaway climate change, the sixth great extinction of planetary life, the acidification of the oceans - all point toward an era of unprecedented turbulence in humanity's relationship within the web of life. But just what is that relationship, and how do we make sense of this extraordinary transition?

ANTHROPOCENE OR CAPITALOCENE? offers answers to these questions from a dynamic group of leading critical scholars. They challenge the theory and history offered by the most significant environmental concept of our times: the Anthropocene. But are we living in the Anthropocene, literally the 'Age of Man'? Is a different response more compelling, and better suited to the strange - and often terrifying - times in which we live? The contributors to this book diagnose the problems of Anthropocene thinking and propose an alternative: the global crises of the twenty-first century are rooted in the Capitalocene; not the Age of Man but the Age of Capital.

ANTHROPOCENE OR CAPITALOCENE? offers a series of provocative essays on nature and power, humanity and capitalism. Including both well-established voices and younger scholars, the book challenges the conventional practice of dividing historical change and contemporary reality into 'Nature' and 'Society', demonstrating the possibilities offered by a more nuanced and connective view of human environment-making, joined at every step with and within the biosphere. In distinct registers, the authors frame their discussions within a politics of hope that signal the possibilities for transcending capitalism, broadly understood as a 'world-ecology' that joins nature, capital and power as a historically evolving whole.

Contributors include Jason W. Moore, Eileen Crist, Donna J. Haraway, Andreas Malm, Elmar Altvater, Daniel Hartley and Christian Parenti.

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Anthropocene-Capitalocene-Nature-History-Capitalism/dp/1629631485

Further Reading
Deep Adaptation: Navigating the Realities of Climate Chaos
‘Deep adaptation’ refers to the personal and collective changes that might help us to prepare for – and live with – a climate-influenced breakdown or collapse of our societies. It is a framework for responding to the terrifying realization of increasing disruption by committing ourselves to reducing suffering while saving more of society and the natural world.
August 25, 2021
Darwin Comes to Town: How the Urban Jungle Drives Evolution
Menno Schilthuizen is one of a growing number of urban ecologists studying how our manmade environments are accelerating and changing the evolution of the animals and plants around us. In Darwin Comes to Town, he takes us around the world for an up-close look at just how stunningly flexible and swift-moving natural selection can be.
August 25, 2021