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John Foster Presentation, 5/2/16

On Monday, May 2nd, Professor John Foster will deliver the talk “The Anthropocene and Ecological Civilization: A Marxian View” at noon in Global Scholars Hall 123. This talk will be presented in Eugene as Part of the “Ecological Civilization” Conference, Claremont California, in Honor of Visiting Scholars from China.


The Holocene epoch in geological history of the last 10,000-12,000 years has given way to a new geological epoch, which natural scientists are calling the Anthropocene, marked by humanity’s emergence as the main driver of change in the Earth system as a whole, and which threatens the future of civilization, a majority of ecosystems on the planet, and the human species itself. From a historical materialist perspective  this represents first and foremost a crisis of civilization. Human civilization arose in the relatively benign environment of the Holocene. In contrast, the Anthropocene is an epoch of increased ecological constraints and dangers, demanding the creation of a new, transitional society, or ecological civilization—one characterized by sustainable human development. The making of such an ecological civilization is closely linked to the long revolutionary transition from capitalism to socialism.