Eco-social Crisis: Definitions, Strategies and Strategic Proposals
A framework that encompasses successive crises which shape the present sociopolitical context and consequences that start to become embedded — constant price hikes, high temperature warnings, a dearth of resources, new and ever-closer military interventions — raises questions over the exact crisis we are facing. And if the current model is exhausted, what is our future?
It would be advantageous for present and future emancipatory movements to interpret our era’s global set of problems both rigorously and appropriately. To utter “environmental crisis” or “climate emergency” often places an unsettling question at the centre: And what if we are not facing a new stumbling block in the development of capitalism but an epoch-defining crisis?
The current ecology-world configuration is at risk and the limits we face are, as well as being biophysical, social and political, which means that the environmental crisis is not simply a partial problem considered and resolved exclusively from environmental sectors. It concerns a systemic crisis that affects the entire social and organisational order, including a capitalist system that does not provide us with a viable response but displaces it in time and space through unpaid work, debt and the colonisation of territories.
Museo Reina Sofía and Ateneo La Maliciosa welcome this open encounter, which unfolds a collective evaluation of forms of organisation and the political strategies practiced to date in order to tackle these problems. It also concludes the course organised by Fundación de los Comunes (the Commons Foundation) entitled The Future is Unwritten. Organising the Capitalocene Crisis.
Arterra Bizimodu is a community that was created in 2014 in the town of Artieda, Navarra. With the slogan “Another world is not only possible, but necessary”, its aim is to make activities aligned towards self-sufficiency more dynamic and to look for other economies that reflect a new equilibrium between the personal and the collective, developing the creativity and different talents of each person that joins the project.
Ecologistas en Acción is a confederation of more than 300 environmentalists organised territorially into federations and groups. Its practices are approached from social environmentalism, which understands that the origin of environmental problems comes increasingly from a globalised model of production and consumption, which also gives rise to other social problems.
Feministas por el Clima is a Madrid-based ecofeminist initiative that assembles over one hundred women from different feminist and environmental collectives. Its main challenges, the fight against climate change and gender equality, are closely linked in confronting a profoundly unequal system.
Laia Forné is an urban sociologist specialised in urban planning, democracy and common property. The co-founder of La Hidra Cooperativa, she participates in different urban movements in Barcelona and is an advisor to different public administrations. Between 2015 and 2019, she was the chief of staff in the Citizen Participation Department of Barcelona City Council. Among other publications, she has collaborated in the collective book Ciudades democráticas (Icaria editorial, 2019).
Fridays For Future is a global climate strike movement directed and organised by young people which was established in August 2018. Its demands include maintaining the global temperature increase below 1.5°C with respect to pre-industrial levels and to guarantee justice and climate equality.
Erika González is a researcher in the Observatory of Multi-Nationals in Latin America – Paz con Dignidad. Her research work focuses on power and the impact and violation of human rights committed by transnational companies, particularly Spanish companies in Latin America. She has tackled this issue, with Pedro Ramiro, in the publications Smurfit Kappa en Colombia: impactos socioecológicos y violaciones de derechos humanos (SumOfUs, OMAL and LASC, 2022) and A dónde va el capitalismo español (Traficantes de Sueños, 2019).
Isidro López Hernández is a sociologist and anthropologist and a representative in the tenth legislature of the Assembly of Madrid. He is also the co-author, with Emmanuel Rodríguez, of Fin de ciclo: financiarización, territorio y sociedad de propietarios en la onda larga del capitalismo hispano (1959-2010) (Traficantes de Sueños, 2010).
Plataforma para la Defensa de la Cordillera Cantábrica is an association which came into being in 2004 with the aim of defending the landscape and environmental unity of the Cordillera Cantábrica mountain range in the face of potential environmental attacks. Its sphere of action is on a national level, chiefly in the territories that make up this mountainous system: Asturias/Asturies; Cantabria; Zamora, León/Llión, Palencia and Burgos; Lugo and Orense/Ourense; Álava/Araba; and La Rioja.
Rojava Azadi is a Madrid-based collective of people with an interest in granting visibility to and supporting emancipatory struggles being carried out in Kurdistan, particularly in the social process of the Rojava Revolution and the model of democratic self-government put forward. Its aim is to spark debate and collective reflection, and to bolster communication and international solidarity, interweaving support networks to facilitate fraternity between people and social mobilisation.
Emilio Santiago Muíño holds a PhD in Social Anthropology from the Autonomous University of Madrid and is a researcher and eco-social activist. He is the author of books that include ¿Qué hacer en caso de incendio? Manifiesto por el Green New Deal (Capitán Swing, 2019), Opción Cero: el reverdecimiento forzoso de la Revolución cubana (Los Libros de la Catarata-FUHEM, 2017) and No es una estafa, es una crisis (de civilización) (Enclave, 2015), and is currently a senior scientist with the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC) in the Department of Anthropology.
Tabadol is a cultural association that defends the rights of residents in Cañada Real. Its objectives include improving social cohesion and community revitalisation in order to prevent situations that hinder co-existence and community development
Living in a phase of transition, collapse, decline or mutation means to breathe and do politics in different worlds. While we act to propel desirable horizons, we need an in-depth exploration of the origins and eco-social dimensions of the current crisis. This session presents different frameworks of interpretation of this crisis and, as a result, different political forms to deal with it.
Museo Reina Sofía, Nouvel Building, Auditorium 200 and Online platform
Despite feeling the impact of the eco-social crisis more keenly in our lives, we continue to think of the world in terms of growth, State demands or norms of consumerism in accordance with a society of middle classes from the global centre. It is time to analyse, therefore, how the eco-social crosses through and transforms our struggles, and whether these inescapable changes open new ways of understanding them and their relationship to other movements.
The session takes the form of an open assembly to imagine and debate possible joint strategies opposite the eco-social crisis.
Ateneo La Maliciosa (Calle de las Peñuelas, 12, Madrid)
Free, until full capacity is reached