Accepted paper:

Anticipating future in rural Newfoundland, Canada: the making of living memories


Joonas Plaan (Tallinn University)

Paper short abstract:

In relation to climate change, this paper aims to look the relation of power, capital and nature as a whole, and how it restructures human and non-human relations and anticipations in front of the future in rural Newfoundland, Canada.

Paper long abstract:

The interaction of changing environments and climate with socio-economic, reveals that the material and discursive processes in relation to ocean and resource users continuously reshape the context - the way people are embedded into nature; local's interaction with the community and global fish market; and political processes. Most importantly, in relation to declining rural population, these interactive contributions, the effects of different scales and hierarchies of socio-economic, the changing environment shape how people make scenarios for the future. What people anticipate guide their decisions for the future. The access to marine resources, or fact of not having the access, participating or not participating in the fisheries are part of experiencing the changes and anticipating their effects (see Born et al. 2011). Natural climate variability in relation to human caused global climate change adds a layer of unknown in front of the future. Shifting seasons and unexpected winds, just to name few effects of climate change, make the environment as unpredicted as socio-economic reality that is shaped by uncontrollable extra-local processes. It has had two effects. It has caused disconnection from the local environment and diminished the power of traditional knowledge of climate. Secondly, people face greater socioeconomic precarity. As a result, the youth leaves for the safer future, leaving behind their homes, parents and friends. The fact that this has happened while Newfoundland fishermen are earning more than ever in the fisheries, is a strong example of how powerful the fear in front of the future is.

panel B16
Future jeopardised: socialities and creations of the fear of climate change