‘The Oceans are Rising and So Are We’: exploring utopian discourses in the school strike for climate movement

McKnight, Heather (2020) ‘The Oceans are Rising and So Are We’: exploring utopian discourses in the school strike for climate movement. Brief Encounters, 4 (4). pp. 48-63. ISSN 2514-0612

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Abstract

This article offers some provisional analyses of the discourses presented by participants in the School Strike for Climate movement, which (since it began in 2018) has been organised variously under the banners Fridays for Future, Youth for Climate and School Strike 4 Climate.1 This paper contends that the movement goes beyond just presenting a vision of an inescapable future, or a simple request for adults to listen to science.2 Instead, their vision is constructive of a better world, as participants challenge the failures of politicians and arguably the adult public, demanding to play an active role in policymaking when it comes to the climate crisis. This movement is constructed upon a critical utopian discourse, expressed through complex temporalities, which define the role of resistance as anticipation. This article also considers how the anxiety in the School Strike movement creates a militant optimism, and how its narratives are demonstrative of an open-ended utopian process.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Utopia, Climate Crisis, School Strikes, Discourse Analysis, Temporality, Protest, Activism, Hope, Ernst Bloch, Utopian Studies
Schools and Departments: School of Law, Politics and Sociology > Law
SWORD Depositor: Mx Elements Account
Depositing User: Mx Elements Account
Date Deposited: 15 Apr 2020 09:52
Last Modified: 15 Apr 2020 10:00
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/90777

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