The Truth about Nature

The Truth about Nature Environmentalism in the Era of Post-truth Politics and Platform Capitalism BUSCHER, Bram

"If the spectacle of platform capitalism is driven by competition for attention and data, how can battles be fought in the name of climate knowledge? That's the question posed by this fascinating book. Through a series of incisive and illuminating analyses, Bram Büscher expertly charts what is needed to revive and sustain environmental activism in the face of machines designed to mobilize clicks."--Nick Srnicek, lecturer in Digital Economy at King's College, London, and author of Platform Capitalism

"In this sweeping analysis, Bram Büscher poses a key question for twenty-first century environmentalism: In a post-truth era, how can environmentalists mobilize new/social media without falling prey to its pitfalls? Illustrated with fascinating case studies from South Africa, the book is replete with incisive insights about the mediation of environmental politics through digital media and platform capitalism. Büscher's analysis should be of tremendous interest to a diverse range of scholars working in the digital environmental humanities, environmental studies, geography, political ecology, and science and technology studies."--Karen Bakker, author of Privatizing Water: Governance Failure and the World's Water Crisis

"Bold and ambitious, this book is an extremely timely intervention in environmental crisis narratives in the age of social media. It is essential reading for anyone interested in slowing and reversing the destruction of nature."--Roderick P. Neumann, author of Imposing Wilderness: Struggles of Livelihood and Nature Preservation in Africa.

"This book is a hearteningly usable portrait of how the nature of mediation, in our digital times, can be used to illuminate the mediation of nature, especially in regard to conservation politics in Africa and beyond. The author offers us a compelling way to challenge the insidious transformation of truth to data, which enables the conversion of nature into digital capital."--Arjun Appadurai, author of The Future as Cultural Fact: Essays on the Global Condition

"A new conservation and development politics is in play in our post-truth world. Bram Büscher's latest book reveals its forms, its origins, and how it is destroying the natures it set out to save. Büscher has spent years conducting fieldwork among conservationists, poachers, politicians, platform capitalists, and South African wildlife. He shows how "doing good" by going viral looks different when viewed on the ground and online. Informed by a serious and accessible philosophical discussion, Büscher unpacks the ways social media platforms and platform capitalist politics are remaking the "truths" about charismatic megafauna and their erstwhile protectors. A #hashtag heaven of fortress conservation reinforced by new media and a good read. - Nancy Lee Peluso, coeditor of New Frontiers of Land Control

"An intense and thought-provoking critique of the digitalization of conservation, which increasingly involves the enmeshing of biological life within the digital realms of new social media and appropriated by platform capitalism and the markets it creates, curates, and feeds."--Bill Adams, author of Green Development: Environment and Sustainability in a Developing World

"Social media is a major vector for environmental consciousness. But as this book lucidly demonstrates, digital calls to observe, celebrate, and save our natural world might do just the opposite--distorting conservation programs while reinforcing hierarchies of race and class. With a rich blend of theoretical analysis and detailed case studies, this book will be essential reading for scholars, activists, and communications professionals concerned with media and environmental conservation."--Thor Kerr, author of To the Beach: Community Conservation and its Role in Sustainable Development

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University of California Press
254 pp.

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