Geographies of the future: Prefigurative politics
AuthorJeffrey, C; Dyson, J
Source TitleProgress in Human Geography: an international review of geographical work in the social sciences and humanities
PublisherSAGE PUBLICATIONS LTD
AffiliationSchool of Geography
Document TypeJournal Article
CitationsJeffrey, C. & Dyson, J. (2020). Geographies of the future: Prefigurative politics. PROGRESS IN HUMAN GEOGRAPHY, 45 (4), pp.641-658. https://doi.org/10.1177/0309132520926569.
Access StatusOpen Access
ARC Grant codeARC/DP170104376
This paper uses an examination of prefigurative politics – popularly imagined as ‘being the change you wish to see’ – to reflect on geographies of the future. We argue that prefigurative politics, which has become common since the mid-1990s, typically proceeds through multiple forms of improvisation. Successful prefigurative politics is usually institutionalised within organisations and movements and reshapes practices, discourses, and structures of power. We demonstrate how a focus on prefigurative politics can inform scholarship on the ‘anticipatory politics’ associated with dominant institutions and geographies of the future more broadly by highlighting ways in which people seek to enact visions of the future and illustrating the impact of these oppositional practices of future making. We argue that prefigurative politics could be a springboard for investigating means-ends alignment as a characteristic of political action and the present as a terrain of politics.
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