Faculty in the Media: On Bruno Latour’s Late Turn Leftward, Moral Panic and Social Reproduction, and the Global Green Transition

Writing in Sidecar, the New Left Review blog, Alyssa Battistoni surveys the career of Bruno Latour, his historically hot and cold relationship with the left—“Latour enjoyed antagonizing the left; in turn, many leftists loved to hate Latour”—and his late turn, spurred by climate change and the coronavirus pandemic, to “questions of production and class, transformation and struggle,” even if “in his own deeply idiosyncratic way.” 

Next, writing in TANK Magazine, Sophie Lewis argues that the acutely reactionary moral panic over transgender children is but a particularly virulent expression of a crisis in social reproduction: “Morbid symptoms of today’s moral panic suggest, to me, some level of anxiety about capitalism’s ability to ensure its own posterity by educating the general population’s appetite for more of itself.” Rather than “save” the children, Lewis proposes, we would do well to protect and cultivate their “self-sovereignty” in order to ask, with them, “what, ultimately, do we want (children to want) to be? And what might solidarity with others’ becoming require us, in turn, to become?”

Lastly, on Planet Critical podcast, Max Ajl sits down with journalist Rachel Donald to discuss the global green transition and what is needed to achieve it—namely, land reform. Increasing the amount of land available to peasants, he argues, both reduces surplus labor and elevates the wellbeing of the poorest, thus relieving the poverty that otherwise only drives the crisis on. Land reform is, according to Ajl, “actually a development imperative.”

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