This paper mobilises a decolonial critique of the Anthropocene. It argues for a certain epistemic disobedience to what, conceptually and politically, the Anthropocene seeks to legitimate. The paper counterposes recent critical and global governance epistemologies, which summon the Anthropocene as a new humanist and statist moment for universal politics, against plural, parochial forms of relational, non-statist affirmation. Hegemonic governance imaginaries that invoke universalist and naturalising rationales are shown to reproduce colonial logics. The paper argues for marginalised and systematically ignored forms of earth-bound relationality that evidence long-standing political and ontological means for responding to modernity’s ecological and social harms. Earthbound and rooted life-worlds can affirm ecological responsibility and co-constitution otherwise. Two examples are presented, one from Afro-Caribbean geographies, another from Anishinaabe legal scholarship. Together they evidence enduring ecological reciprocities that unsettle and refuse the totalising rationalities invoked by Anthropocene horizons.
- global environmental governance
- Indigenous law