Università degli Studi di Milano, 2020-04-22

This thesis is focused on citizens’ based environmental initiatives, particularly concentrating on self-managed urban gardening. My exploration was largely dedicated to the study of vegetal politics. With this term I refer to the open-ended materialdiscursive assemblage of politics and policies carried out by public institutions and groups of citizens in urban green spaces (vegetal politics on the vegetal) and interactions of human and nonhuman actors that co-construct urban green spaces, particularly focusing on the role of vegetal agency (vegetal politics of the vegetal). The research is situated in the field of environmental sociology. The whole research and writing process has been enrooted in postanthropocentric newmaterialist feminisms, which I combined with political ecology. The research was made performing ethnography, which at best could investigate situated material practices of the everyday life. I combined a more classical ethnographic approach (observant participation and semi-structured interviews) with multispecies ethnography (an emergent nonanthropocentric methodology). I selected the city of Rome as my ethnographic terrain. The city is experiencing since at least a decade a structural withdrawal of public institutions in charge of the management of urban spaces and green areas and a large spread of environmental citizens’ based micropolitical practices. The fieldwork was carried out from September 2017 to September 2018 in the Roman territory. The investigation showed the analytical and material power of vegetal politics. That is, a postanthropocentric political analysis and practice that allows to creep in the folds of reality, giving emphasis throughout the whole research and analysis process on actors who risked otherwise being invisiblised by the use of a fully humanist and anthropocentric length. The study revealed that politics and policies pursued by public institutions and by gardeners on green spaces (vegetal politics on the vegetal), in some cases reiterate or consolidate at a material level spatial injustices, particularly when a normative and controlling attitude prevails unopposed. Instead, from the daily interaction with the nonhuman world a political material relationality emerges which leads some activists to recognize subjectivity to nonhuman actors with whom they enter in a closer relationship of care and alliance. The analysis of interactions between humans, plants and nonhuman actors make emerge the power and capacity for action and transformation of the latters, which arise exceeding the boundaries of human intentionality (vegetal politics of the vegetal). It is precisely when human agency is lacking or incapable of domestication that the power of action of the nonhuman is more clearly shown, indicating that agency is shared and continually negotiated.

diritti: info:eu-repo/semantics/embargoedAccess
In relazione con info:eu-repo/semantics/altIdentifier/hdl/2434/719284
supervisor: P. A. Rebughini ; director of doctoral thesis: M. Barisione
Settore SPS/10 - - Sociologia dell'Ambiente e del Territorio

Tesi di dottorato. | Lingua: Inglese. | Paese: | BID: TD20012515