Steering clear of politics

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Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
A1 Alkuperäisartikkeli tieteellisessä aikakauslehdessä
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Date
2017
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Language
en
Pages
566-580
Series
Journal of Political Ecology, Volume 24
Abstract
Abstract Practical projects around the world are exploring and prefiguring ecologically feasible futures. The ideas informing these initiatives are familiar from degrowth discourses. But particularly where activists hail from the professional middle-classes of wealthy cities - architects, designers and other 'creatives' in Helsinki for example - they risk being dismissed by the media as well as by academics as vacuous life-style experimenters. Looking at Finland, the sense that this activity is not truly political or transformative can be further enhanced by activists' own reluctance to enter into explicitly political debate and their preference for discussing futures in the neutral language of science. Connecting today's situation to precursors in the 1960s, however, we can see how these local projects are embedded in local political culture, including a Finnish tendency to play up scientific rationality as a tool for managing collective affairs. This contrast with many other degrowth discourses shows the significance of local histories in influencing the space available for people to work out alternatives to the status quo.
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Keywords
social movements, Finland, urban/DIY activism, design, 6132 Visual arts and design
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Citation
Berglund , E 2017 , ' Steering clear of politics : Local virtues in Helsinki's design activism ' Journal of Political Ecology , vol 24 , pp. 566-580 .