Environmental Melancholia: Psychological Dimensions of Engagement

Author(s) : Renee Lertzman

Environmental Melancholia: Psychological Dimensions of Engagement

Book Details

  • Publisher : Routledge
  • Published : 2015
  • Cover : Hardback
  • Pages : 224
  • Category :
  • Catalogue No : 37000
  • ISBN 13 : 9780415727990
  • ISBN 10 : 0415727995
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In this groundbreaking book, Renee Lertzman applies psychoanalytic theory and psychosocial research to the issue of public engagement and public apathy in response to chronic ecological threats. In highlighting unconscious and affective dimensions of contemporary ecological issues, Lertzman deconstructs the idea that there is a gap between what people actually care about, and what is actually carried out in policy and personal practice. Instead, she argues for a theory of environmental melancholia, that accounts for the ways in which people may experience profound loss and disruption caused by environmental issues, yet may have trouble expressing or making sense of such experiences. In doing so she presents an innovative way to think about and design engagement practices and policy interventions.

Based on qualitative fieldwork conducted in Green Bay, Wisconsin involving in-depth interviews, the book provides a psychosocial, psychoanalytic perspective on subjectivity, affect and identity, and what this means for understanding behaviour in relation to environmental crisis and climate change. This book offers a fresh perspective to the field of environmental psychology that until now has been largely dominated by research in cognitive, behavioural and social psychology. It will appeal to academics and researchers in the fields of psychoanalysis, psychosocial studies and sustainability, as well as policy makers, educators and communications professionals internationally.

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