Beyond Mothering Earth: Ecological Citizenship and the Politics of Care


MacGregor, Sherilyn. 2007. Beyond Mothering Earth: Ecological Citizenship and the Politics of Care. Vancouver: UBC Press.

Author: Sherilyn MacGregor


Women’s environmental activism is often described in maternalist terms – as if motherhood and caring for the environment go hand in hand. While feminists celebrate this connection, women and all those who care for people and environments are facing increasing burdens and decreasing time for civic engagement. 
In Beyond Mothering Earth, MacGregor argues that celebrations of “earthcare” as women’s unique contribution to the search for sustainability often neglect to consider the importance of politics and citizenship in women’s lives. Drawing on interviews with women who juggle private caring with civic engagement in quality-of-life concerns, she proposes an alternative: a project of feminist ecological citizenship that affirms the practice of citizenship as an intrinsically valuable activity while recognizing the foundational aspects of caring labour and natural processes that allow its specificity to flourish. (Summary from UBC Press)

Table of Contents

Part One: Theoretical Interrogations

2. The Roots and Rhetoric of Ecomaternalism

3. Down among the Women: Ecofeminism and Identity Politics at the Grassroots

4. From Care to Citizenship: Calling Ecofeminism Back to Politics

5. The Problems and Possibilities of Ecological Citizenship

Part Two: Conversations

6. Conversations with Activist Women: Towards a Counter-Narrative

7. The Private, the Public, and the Planet: Juggling Care and Activism in Daily Life

8. Activist Women Theorize the Green Political

9. No Motherhood Issue: The Project of Feminist Ecological Citizenship

Topics: Citizenship, Economies, Care Economies, Environment, Climate Change, Feminisms, Feminist Political Ecology

Year: 2007

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