Environmental Governance through Partnerships
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Environmental Governance through Partnerships

A Discourse Theoretical Study

  • New Horizons in Environmental Politics series

Ayşem Mert

Transnational partnerships have become mainstream across levels and issues of environmental governance, following their endorsement by the UN in 2002. Despite apparent success, their desirability as a way of governing human interactions with the planet’s ecosystems has not yet been properly investigated. In this revelatory book Ayşem Mert combines post-structuralist discourse theory and ecocriticism to analyse three discourses that have been rooted into the logic of partnerships: privatisation of governance, sustainable development and democratic participation. Ultimately, Mert argues that these discourses help understand both the potential and structural limitations of sustainability partnerships.
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Chapter 2: Methodological reflections: studying change within continuity

Ayşem Mert

Extract

The first author of Speech was God himselfe, that instructed Adam how to name such creatures as he presented to his sight; For the Scripture goeth no further in this matter. But this was sufficient to direct him to adde more names, as the experience and use of the creatures should give him occasion; and to joyn them in such manner by degrees, as to make himselfe understood; and so by succession of time, so much language might be gotten, as he had found use for; [. . .] But all this language gotten, and augmented by Adam and his posterity, was again lost at the tower of Babel, when by the hand of God, every man was stricken for his rebellion, with an oblivion of his former language. And being hereby forced to disperse themselves into severall parts of the world, it must needs be, that the diversity of Tongues that now is, proceeded by degrees from them, in such manner, as need (the mother of all inventions) taught them; and in tract of time grew every where more copious. (Hobbes 1651 [1985]: 100–101)

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