UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Imaginative Geographies of Green : Difference, Postcoloniality, and Affect in environmental narratives in contemporary Turkey Harris, Leila

Abstract

Analyzing everyday environmental imaginaries from contemporary Turkey through the lenses of postcolonial, emotional-affective, and nature-society geographies, this article offers insights into shifting nature-society relations and possibilities. Based on a series of interviews and focus groups conducted in four sites (Istanbul, Ankara, Diyarbakir, and Sanliurfa), the concept of imaginative geographies of green is offered to highlight social and spatial difference as central to the articulation of green visions and movements. The research foregrounds several social and spatial gradients specific to the Turkish context, including East-West divides both within and beyond Turkey (i.e., Kurdish- Turkish and Eastern-Western Turkey, as well as notions of Turkishness and Europeanness ). The work also suggests that environmental imaginaries have deeply emotional, ambivalent, and power-laden associations. Apart from the implications of the work for enriched understandings of emergent environmental possibilities in this context, the conclusion also touches on ramifications for EU accession debates as well as new directions for work on environmental citizenship and movements in the global South.

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