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Beyond Climate Justice: Why the Environmentalism of the Rich has Failed Us, and How We Can Reinvent a Vision of Planetary Justice
On April 4, 1967, Martin Luther King, jr., came out publicly against the Vietnam War. The speech was entitled “Beyond Vietnam.” Beyond, in that title, meant everything. King not only broke with the liberal establishment – which viewed the War as separate from racism and an abberation of American foreign policy. He elaborated a radical critique that linked racism and exploitation at home and abroad. The problem with the War, in other words, went well beyond the War. Over the next year, King began to elaborate a vision of an American socialism animated by a searing indictment of capitalism’s “triple evils” (racism, militarism, and class exploitation) and grounded in a triple alliance: the antiwar, civil rights, and labor movements. In this talk, environmental historian Jason W. Moore reevaluates a half-century of the Environmentalism of the Rich – first emerging after 1968 – in the aftermath of King’s radical turn, and the missed opportunity for a program of planetary justice. As King underscored in his final months, justice cannot be effectively pursued piece by piece. The “whole society” with and within the web of life must be reinvented as if “all life [were] interrelated”—as if we were “all caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied into a single garment of destiny.”

Apr 1, 2022 12:15 PM in Eastern Time (US and Canada)

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