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Contradictions of Sustainable Mobility - The Illogic of Growth and the Logic of Myth

Essebo, Maja LU and Baeten, Guy LU (2012) In Tijdschrift Voor Economische en Sociale Geografie 103(5). p.555-565
Abstract
This paper presents the prospects of viewing sustainable mobility as a merger of seemingly opposing values and ideas into a coherent and fully emplotted myth. Myth, in this sense, is not a false story meant to amuse or discredit, but rather a story based on naturalised beliefs giving it the supremacy of the obvious. Through the process of emplotment, myths create internal logics that help relieve anxiety, rationalise behaviour and naturalise societal and individual convictions. As such, myths are a fundamental and habitual part of life. The myth of sustainable mobility is not one, but two stories that of development as quantitative growth and the discourse of sustainability which are merged, emplotted and naturalised. It is based on the... (More)
This paper presents the prospects of viewing sustainable mobility as a merger of seemingly opposing values and ideas into a coherent and fully emplotted myth. Myth, in this sense, is not a false story meant to amuse or discredit, but rather a story based on naturalised beliefs giving it the supremacy of the obvious. Through the process of emplotment, myths create internal logics that help relieve anxiety, rationalise behaviour and naturalise societal and individual convictions. As such, myths are a fundamental and habitual part of life. The myth of sustainable mobility is not one, but two stories that of development as quantitative growth and the discourse of sustainability which are merged, emplotted and naturalised. It is based on the fears of economic and environmental collapse, but while fear is an essential characteristic of myth and a source of much of its power the myth also offers hope. The hope lies in the promise of continued trends of increased mobility while still being able to preserve the world for future generations. This entangles the very notions of mobility, development and sustainability, creating a confusion of concepts as the contrast between growth and limits wanes. Rather than setting biophysical limits, sustainability becomes a justification for continued growth green growth, sustainable mobility. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
sustainable mobility, myth, growth, naturalisation, beliefs, contradictions
in
Tijdschrift Voor Economische en Sociale Geografie
volume
103
issue
5
pages
555 - 565
publisher
Wiley-Blackwell
external identifiers
  • wos:000311238900005
  • scopus:84869843312
ISSN
0040-747X
DOI
10.1111/j.1467-9663.2012.00733.x
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
74cacdcc-2fd2-440f-bf46-beb1c3b8821e (old id 3379543)
date added to LUP
2013-01-30 14:36:54
date last changed
2017-09-24 04:10:20
@article{74cacdcc-2fd2-440f-bf46-beb1c3b8821e,
  abstract     = {This paper presents the prospects of viewing sustainable mobility as a merger of seemingly opposing values and ideas into a coherent and fully emplotted myth. Myth, in this sense, is not a false story meant to amuse or discredit, but rather a story based on naturalised beliefs giving it the supremacy of the obvious. Through the process of emplotment, myths create internal logics that help relieve anxiety, rationalise behaviour and naturalise societal and individual convictions. As such, myths are a fundamental and habitual part of life. The myth of sustainable mobility is not one, but two stories that of development as quantitative growth and the discourse of sustainability which are merged, emplotted and naturalised. It is based on the fears of economic and environmental collapse, but while fear is an essential characteristic of myth and a source of much of its power the myth also offers hope. The hope lies in the promise of continued trends of increased mobility while still being able to preserve the world for future generations. This entangles the very notions of mobility, development and sustainability, creating a confusion of concepts as the contrast between growth and limits wanes. Rather than setting biophysical limits, sustainability becomes a justification for continued growth green growth, sustainable mobility.},
  author       = {Essebo, Maja and Baeten, Guy},
  issn         = {0040-747X},
  keyword      = {sustainable mobility,myth,growth,naturalisation,beliefs,contradictions},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {5},
  pages        = {555--565},
  publisher    = {Wiley-Blackwell},
  series       = {Tijdschrift Voor Economische en Sociale Geografie},
  title        = {Contradictions of Sustainable Mobility - The Illogic of Growth and the Logic of Myth},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-9663.2012.00733.x},
  volume       = {103},
  year         = {2012},
}