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Collective agency, non-human causality and environmental social movements : a case study of the Australian 'landcare movement'

journal contribution
posted on 06.12.2017, 00:00 authored by Stewart LockieStewart Lockie
This article explores the implications for social movement theory of recent work in the sociology of scientific knowledge (SSK) that explicitly rejects dualisms between society and nature, structure and agency, and macro and micro-levels of analysis. In doing so it argues that SSK offers: (1) a theoretically useful definition of collective agency as an achievement of interaction; that is (2) sensitive to the influence of both humans and non-humans in the networks of the social; and (3) provides practical tools with which to analyse dynamics of power and agency in the ordering of networks. Applying this framework to a case study of the Australian 'landcare movement' it is argued that a range of practices have been used to enact 'action at a distance' over Australian farmers and to 'order' agricultural practices in ways that are consistent with corporate interests while minimizing opposition from conservation organizations otherwise highly critical of chemical agriculture.

Funding

Category 1 - Australian Competitive Grants (this includes ARC, NHMRC)

History

Volume

40

Issue

1

Start Page

41

End Page

58

Number of Pages

18

ISSN

1440-7833

Location

Thousand Oaks, CA, USA

Publisher

Sage Publications

Language

en-aus

Peer Reviewed

Yes

Open Access

No

External Author Affiliations

Centre for Social Science Research;

Era Eligible

Yes

Journal

Journal of Sociology.