Accumulation: The Material Politics of Plastic by Jennifer Gabrys

By Jennifer Gabrys

From foodstuff punnets to charge cards, plastic enables all the pieces of our day-by-day lives. It has develop into primary to methods of latest socio-material dwelling. Universalised and abstracted, it's always taken care of because the passive item of political deliberations, or a troublesome fabric challenging human administration. yet in what methods could a 'politics of plastics' take care of either its particular manifestation particularly artefacts and occasions, and its advanced dispersed heterogeneity?

Accumulation explores the energy and complexity of plastic. This interdisciplinary assortment makes a speciality of how the presence and recalcitrance of plastic unearths the relational exchanges throughout human and artificial materialities. It captures multiplicity through attractive with the processual materialities or plasticity of plastic. via a chain of themed essays on plastic materialities, plastic economies, plastic our bodies and new articulations of plastic, the editors and bankruptcy authors learn particular features of plastic in motion. How are a number of plastic realities enacted? What are their effects?

This booklet may be of curiosity to scholars and students of sociology, human and cultural geography, environmental reviews, intake reviews, technological know-how and know-how reports, layout, and political theory.

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Extra resources for Accumulation: The Material Politics of Plastic

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Despite its hedonistic inclinations, the Plastic Age developed a mathematical notion of time as an abstract space consisting of a juxtaposition of discrete points or instants, blurring all issues of persistence and permanence. Plastics are supposed to be ephemeral only because – like the flying arrow of Zeno’s paradox commented on by Bergson (1946) – they are supposed to be at rest, as moments of being. By contrast, our Plastic Age confronts the issue of duration. The ephemeral present of plastics is not just an instant detached from the past and the future.

Despite themselves, they become ‘embroiled’ in the event and at once close it down and open it up. ) discuss this complexity with regard to the discursive abstractions of the ‘gold-standard-ness’ (broadly meaning scientific excellence) of randomized controlled trials of pharmaceutical prophylactics for people at high risk of HIV infection. In their analysis, an abstraction acts, and is enacted, in a variety of contrasting ways. First, it is an attractor – a sociomaterial ‘aspiration’ – toward which an event is moving.

Atoms and molecules are functional units useful for making nanodevices such as molecular rotors, motors or switches. Biopolymers provide smart tools: the two strands of DNA are used to self-assemble nano-objects; liposomes are used as drug-carriers. Living organisms such as bacteria are being re-engineered or even synthesized to perform technological tasks. ‘E-coli moves into the plastic-age’ was the title of one research news item announcing that plastics that are part of our lifestyle would be synthesized by E-coli bacteria with no waste disposal, and no more pollution or contamination of the environment (Lee 1997).

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