Research: capitalism as world-ecology, political ecology, environmental history, food and agriculture, world history, political economy of agrarian change, financialization.
Jason W. Moore (杰森·W.摩尔 or 杰森·摩尔) is assistant professor of sociology at Binghamton University, and coordinator of the World-Ecology Research Network. He writes frequently on the history of capitalism in Europe, Latin America, and the United States, from the long sixteenth century to the neoliberal era. His research has been recognized with the Braverman Award of the Society for the Study of Social Problems (1999); the Bernstein and Byres Prize in Agrarian Studies (2011); the Distinguished Scholarship Award of the American Sociological Association’s Political Economy of the World-System Section (2002, and 2011 honorable mention); and the Alice Hamilton Prize of the American Society for Environmental History (2004). His Capitalism in the Web of Life: Ecology and the Accumulation of Capital will be published with Verso in 2015. He is presently completing Ecology and the rise of capitalism, an environmental history of the rise of capitalism, for the University of California Press. Many of his essays can be found here.
CAPITALISM AS WORLD-ECOLOGY
My concern is not merely to chart the environmental “consequences” of globalisation, but rather to illuminate the ways in which the core processes of globalisation (past and present) are themselves socio-ecological projects. In this reading, factories and financial centers are every bit as important to environmental history as farms and forests. Wall Street, in other words, is a way of organizing nature. This perspective is what I call “capitalism as world-ecology.” In world-ecological perspective, the modern world-system does not develop upon nature, but rather emerges through nature-society relations. This is a protest against, and an alternative to, the Cartesian worldview that puts nature in one box, society in another. My concern is not merely to chart the environmental “consequences” of globalisation, but rather to illuminate the ways in which the core processes of globalisation (past and present) are themselves socio-ecological projects.
My research unfolds at the intersection of global political economy, modern world history, and global environmental change. I am deeply committed to a transdisciplinary, historically-grounded approach to theory which views its greatest utility as heuristic and eductive. A historian at heart, I am committed to the ongoing cross-fertilization of ideas across the disciplines as a way to develop new angles of vision on the world history of modernity, including the contours of the present global crisis. As a result, my research moves simultaneously on three fronts:
1) longue durée studies of the history of capitalism as “world-ecology,” in which the accumulation of capital, the pursuit of power, and the production of nature are joined in dialectical unity;
2003. “The Modern World-System as Environmental History? Ecology and the Rise of Capitalism.” Theory & Society 32(3): 307-377. (Chinese translation, in Xin Shi Xue (New History, IV), Mingfang Xia, ed. Beijing: China Book Store, 2011).
2010. ‘Amsterdam is Standing on Norway’, Part II: The Global North Atlantic in the Ecological Revolution of the Seventeenth Century,” Journal of Agrarian Change 10(2): 188-227.
2010. “‘Amsterdam is Standing on Norway’, Part I: The Alchemy of Capital, Empire, and Nature in the Diaspora of Silver, 1545-1648,” Journal of Agrarian Change 10(1): 33-68.
2) the “brief environmental history” of neoliberal globalization, viewed from the standpoint of long-run patterns of recurrence, evolution, and rupture in the modern world;
2008. “Ecological Crises and the Agrarian Question in World-Historical Perspective,” Monthly Review 60(6), 54-63. (Translated into Portuguese, 2008; Korean, 2009; Turkish, 2010.)
2010. “The End of the Road? Agricultural Revolutions in the Capitalist World-Ecology, 1450-2010,” The Journal of Agrarian Change 10(3): 389-413.
2010. “Capitalism and Ecological Crisis: Two Crises or One?” in Capitalism and Its Discontents: Conversations with Radical Thinkers in a Time of Tumult. Sasha Lilley, ed. Oakland, CA: PM Press. [For original radio interview, go to: http://www.againstthegrain.org/program/350/id/371549/wed-9-15-10-crisis-nature-crisis-capital.
3) theoretical and methodological reconstruction in the effort to translate the extraordinary body of “green social theory” into a “green” world history – not merely the “environmental history of” social change in the modern world, but modernity as a socio-ecological project and process.
2000. “Environmental Crises and the Metabolic Rift in World-Historical Perspective.” Organization & Environment 13(2): 123-158.
2003. “Capitalism as World-Ecology: Braudel and Marx on Environmental History.” Organization & Environment 16(4): 431-458.
2011. “Transcending the Metabolic Rift: A Theory of Crises in the Capitalist World-Ecology,” Journal of Peasant Studies 38(1): 1-46.