Eight new books for an ecosocialist bookshelf


The Robbery of Nature: Capitalism and the Ecological Rift
By John Bellamy Foster & Brett Clark
Monthly Review Press, 2020

Foster and Clark examine how capitalism plunders nature, leading to the current anthropogenic rift in the Earth System. They show that the ecological crisis extends beyond questions of traditional class struggle to a corporeal rift in the physical organisation of living beings themselves, raising critical issues of social reproduction, racial capitalism, alienated speciesism and ecological imperialism. Highly recommended.

The Future We Choose: Surviving the Climate Crisis
By Christiana Figueres & Tom Rivett-Carnac
Alfred A Knopf, 2020

The authors, who played leading roles in negotiating the 2015 Paris Agreement, offer two scenarios, describing what life on Earth will be like by 2050 if emissions aren’t slashed, and what a carbon neutral, regenerative world could be like. They argue for confronting the climate crisis head-on, and outline what they believe governments, corporations, and individuals must do to fend off disaster.

Neoliberal Lives: Work, politics, nature and health in the contemporary United States
By Robert Chernomas, Ian Hudson & Mark Hudson
Manchester University Press, 2019

Over the past 35 years, capitalist logic has expanded into previously protected spheres of life, with devastating effects on the potential for human development. This is a manifesto of sorts for the range of processes that need to be confronted if human potential is to be freed from the increasingly cramped quarters to which neoliberalism has confined it.

Our History is the Future: Standing Rock versus the Dakota Access Pipeline and the Long Tradition of Indigenous Resistance
By Nick Estes
Verso, 2019

At once a work of history, a manifesto, and an intergenerational story of resistance. Estes traces traditions of Indigenous resistance that led to the No Dakota Access Pipeline campaign, the largest Indigenous protest movement in the twenty-first century — so far.

The Big Stall: How big oil and think tanks are blocking action on climate change in Canada
By Donald Gutstein
Lorimer, 2018

Gutstein traces the origins of the Canadian government’s climate change plan back to Big Oil. He shows that in the past 15 years, Big Oil and right-wing ideologues have manipulated media, politicians and public opinion to promote new wells and pipelines and prevent the effective measures required to create a zero-carbon world.

Environmental Justice in a Moment of Danger
By Julie Sze
University of California Press, 2020

Environmental injustices are manifesting across racial and class divides in devastatingly disproportionate ways. What does this moment of danger mean for the environment and for justice? What can we learn from environmental justice struggles? Sze examines how mobilisations and movements fight, survive, love and create in the face of violence that challenges the conditions of life itself.

Agrobiodiversity: Integrating Knowledge for a Sustainable Future
By Karl S. Zimmerer & Stef de Haan, editors
MIT Press, 2019

The increasing simplification of food systems, the continuing decline of plant species, and the ongoing spread of pests and disease threaten biodiversity in agriculture, as well as the sustainability of food resources. From a range of disciplines, the contributors examine the challenges of agrobiodiversity and sustainability and propose a framework for future research, scholarship, policy and practice.

Motor Vehicles, the Environment and the Human Condition: Driving to Extinction
By Hans A Baer
Lexington Books, 2019

The world now has more than a billion motor vehicles, and this number continues to grow. Baer provides a political ecological perspective recognises that motor vehicles embody the social, structural, cultural, and environmental contradictions of the capitalist world system. Moving beyond motor vehicles will require creating an ecosocialist world system based on social justice, democratic processes, environmental sustainability and a safe climate.

[Inclusion on this list does not imply agreement with the contents of a book.]