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The geology of mankind? A critique of the Anthropocene narrative

  • Andreas Malm
  • Alf Hornborg
Publishing year: 2014
Language: English
Pages: 62-69
Publication/Series: The Anthropocene Review
Volume: 1
Issue: 1
Document type: Journal article
Publisher: SAGE Publications

Abstract english

The Anthropocene narrative portrays humanity as a species ascending to power over the rest of the Earth System. In the crucial field of climate change, this entails the attribution of fossil fuel combustion to properties acquired during human evolution, notably the ability to manipulate fire. But the fossil economy was not created nor is it upheld by humankind in general. This intervention questions the use of the species category in the Anthropocene narrative and argues that it is analytically flawed, as well as inimical to action. Intra-species inequalities are part and parcel of the current ecological crisis and cannot be ignored in attempts to understand it.


  • Social and Economic Geography


  • ISSN: 2053-020X
E-mail: andreas [dot] malm [at] hek [dot] lu [dot] se

Associate senior lecturer

Human Ecology


The Department of Human Geography
and the Human Ecology Division

Address: Sölvegatan 10,
223 62 Lund
Phone: 046-222 17 59

Faculty of Social Sciences