Foucault News

News and resources on French thinker Michel Foucault (1926-1984)

Cielemęcka, O.
Forest futures: biopolitics, purity, and extinction in Europe’s last ‘pristine’ forest
(2020) Journal of Gender Studies, 29 (1), pp. 63-75.

DOI: 10.1080/09589236.2019.1691981

This article examines how the ideological and material aspects of ‘purity’ play out in the environmental conflict in the Białowieża Forest that took place in Poland in 2017. I consider how ‘purity’ informs not only environmental politics but also organizes biopolitical regimes that normalize the hegemonic understanding of nation, identity, and gender. In the context of environmental change and species extinction, I pick up on Foucault’s reflection on purity and its decisive role in biopolitical societies, as it divides lives into those worth preserving and those without a future. Against such divisions, I search for ways to imagine and enact ways of surviving together: I look at the Białowieża Forest as a human-nonhuman ecology in which nature’s lively impurity inspires the affinities running between environmental actions and feminist struggles for more just futures. © 2019, © 2019 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.

Author Keywords
Białowieża Forest; Environmental change; gender; nationalism; purity; reproductive politics

Index Keywords
article, ecology, environmental change, female, feminism, forest, gender, human, human experiment, male, organization, Poland, running, species extinction

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