Down to Earth: Politics in the new climate regime
Wiley, $28.95 pb, 140 pp, 9781509530595
Bruno Latour is one of the world’s leading sociologists and anthropologists. Based in France, he brings a refreshingly non-Anglophone approach to the big political problems of our times. At the heart of his latest book are the hypotheses that ‘we can understand nothing about the politics of the last 50 years if we do not put the question of climate change and its denial front and center’, and that ‘a significant segment of the ruling classes … had concluded that the Earth no longer had room enough for them and for everyone else’. These are strong and challenging statements, but, as Latour says, how else to explain the ‘explosion of inequalities, the scope of deregulation … or the panicky desire to return to the old protections of the nation state’ that are so characteristic of much of current politics?