M. de Goede
- Precaution, preemption: arts and technologies of the actionable future
- Environment and Planning D - Society & Space
- Volume | Issue number
- 27 | 5
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Humanities (FGw)
- Amsterdam Institute for Humanities Research (AIHR)
Terrorism and climate change are frequently perceived as ‘total threats’ articulated and imagined through a wide array of arts and technologies. If the construction of these threats appears similar then so are the pleas for preemptive and precautionary action. In this paper we explore the ways in which terrorism and climate change are imagined, drawing on a conjoined history in which preemption and precaution are not easily separable. We then trace this through the knowledges, models, and ideas of risk that inform contemporary debates on these issues and suggest that these are caught between a desire for rationality and affective governance through catastrophic visions. Furthermore, we argue that these imaginations of an actionable future have political consequences that depoliticize and delegitimate debate and that potentially bring the unimaginable into being. Reconceiving precautionary politics is thus vital if we are to engage ethically with the world.
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