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Cities in the Anthropocene

Cities in the Anthropocene

New Ecology and Urban Politics

by Ihnji Jon

From Australia to North America, we need to rethink how our cities resist environmental change in the age of climate catastrophe

Climate change is real, and extreme weather events are its physical manifestations. These extreme events affect how we live and work in cities, and subsequently the way we design, plan, and govern them. Taking action 'for the environment' is not only a moral imperative; instead, it is activated by our everyday experience in the city.

Based on the author's site visits and interviews in Darwin (Australia), Tulsa (Oklahoma), Cleveland (Ohio), and Cape Town (South Africa), this book tells the story of how cities can lead a transformative pro-environment politics.

National governments often fail to make binding agreements that bring about radical actions for the environment. This book shows how cities, as local sites of mobilizing a collective, political agenda, can be frontiers for activating the kind of environmental politics that appreciates the role of 'nature' in the everyday functioning of our urban life.

Ihnji Jon is a Lecturer in International Urban Politics at University of Melbourne, where she explores political theory, environment politics, and urban governance. Her work has been published by various peer reviewed journals, including Planning Theory, L’Espace Politique, and Planning Theory & Practice.

'This thought-provoking book brings an exciting, young voice to contemporary urban planning. Jon proposes that pragmatic urban policy must factor in respectful, more-than-human relationships. Her message of hope in the possibilities of the unknown should shape critical discussion in urban planning and geography seminars'

- Jean Hillier, Professor Emerita at the Centre for Urban Research, RMIT University, Melbourne

'Theoretically-informed and practically-engaged, Ihnji Jon has written a thoughtful and compelling argument for an anti-essentialist ecology that links environmental concerns with inequality and centers the necessary political action in the fertile complexity of cities'

- Robert A. Beauregard, Professor Emeritus, Columbia University

'A must-read - a carefully crafted account that unsettles wide-ranging expositions of the unfolding present of perilous uncertainty. Extremely important, both theoretically and from a policy perspective'

- Prince K. Guma, Research Fellow and Assistant Country Director, British Institute in East Africa

'Shows with nuance and care how cities can provide a platform for politics in the midst of ecological crisis. An essential book for thinking, teaching, and taking action in the anthropocene'

- Derek S. Denman, Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Political Science at University of Copenhagen

'Engaging with contemporary urban existence in creative and subversive ways, this inspiring book opens new avenues for scholars, activists and professionals to advance an environmental politics appropriate to the anthropocene'

- Dr. Kevin J. Grove, Associate Professor of Human Geography Department of Global and Sociocultural Studies, Florida International University

'Jon's insightful research shows how place-based urban practice can connect with green theory and community activism to affirm the global role of cities as drivers of positive equity-based ecological and social change with imagination, hope and soul.'

- Dr Paul Downton, author of 'Ecopolis: Architecture and Cities for a Changing Climate' (Springer, 2008)

Figures and tables
1. Introduction: Environment politics beyond environment
2. Why cities? Towards a new theorisation of ‘scale’
3. Darwin vs. Tulsa: How cities talk about ‘nature’ without saying the word
4. Cleveland vs. Cape Town: Can a city aspire to be green and inclusive?
5. Cities and complexity: Linking ‘the social’ with ‘the environmental’
6. Conclusion: Possibilities of the unknown, for the unknown
Postscript: Future directions for cities in the Anthropocene

Published by Pluto Press in Jul 2021
Paperback ISBN: 9780745341507
eBook ISBN: 9781786807557

135mm x 215mm