1. bookVolume 12 (2021): Issue 1 (June 2021)
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14 Jun 2012
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2 times per year
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access type Open Access

From the “Greta Thunberg Effect” to Green Conversion of Universities: The Reconstructive Praxis of Discursive Mobilizations

Published Online: 29 May 2021
Page range: 121 - 139
Journal Details
License
Format
Journal
First Published
14 Jun 2012
Publication timeframe
2 times per year
Languages
English
Abstract

This paper investigates how one could envision a discursive mobilization process to transform protest movements into agents that help reconstruct the universities as agents supporting material mobilizations leading to ecological reconstruction. After reviewing universities’ ecological footprints, the author shows how theories of mobilization and conjunctures could contribute to understanding how this transformation could occur. Discursive mobilizations advance values or ideas but stop short of innovation and production system changes. Material mobilizations affect deployment of human, technological, industrial and financial resources. Conjunctures involve linkages of political activity to spaces implicated in both kinds of mobilizations in a given historical time frame. The study shows many nations having both extensive climate activism and concentrations of university students creating a possibility for greening education centers based on various models for doing so. Yet, two key problems emerge. First, some nations lag in climate activism. Second, interest in a Green Deal or Green New Deal does not always match the level of attention to leading activist Greta Thunberg. The paper illustrates how such problems can be addressed by university-based campaigns linking activist cohorts, mobilization supporting green conversion of higher education and solidaristic, mutual aid exchanges among regions.

Keywords

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