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The Media CommonsGlobalization and Environmental Discourses$
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Patrick D. Murphy

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780252041037

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252041037.001.0001

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Earth Discourses

Earth Discourses

Theorizing the Environment for Global Media Studies

(p.17) 1 Earth Discourses
The Media Commons

Patrick D. Murphy

University of Illinois Press

This chapter draws from the interpretive school of environmental policy analysis, especially John S. Dryzek’s The Politics of the Earth: Environmental Discourses (Oxford, 2005), to provide an overview of the environmental discourses that have historically held cultural currency around the world. It summarizes the ontological foundations of key and competing environmental discourses: the Limits discourse (Survivalism), the Promethean discourse, Democratic Pragmatism, Ecological Modernization, Green Radicalism (Eco-feminism, Environmental Justice) and Sustainable Development. Of primary interest in this overview is how the emergence of what Dryzek calls the “Promethean discourse,” an environmental discourse tied to abundance, limited government, and innovation, has been conversely related to the “Limits discourse,” which is grounded in the construct of scarcity and the “commons” and “tipping point” metaphors, and how the debate between the two has spawned a range of other, alternative environmental discourses.

Keywords:   agency, the commons, Democratic Pragmatism, discourse analysis, Dryzek, Eco-feminism, Ecological Modernization, Environmental Justice, Green Radicalism, growth, Limits, Promethean discourse, scarcity, Survivalism, Sustainable Development

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