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Recycling of Things Past: Freegan Use of Primitivist Strategies and Urban Foraging

Haga, Eric LU (2013) SANK01 20131
Social Anthropology
Abstract
In this study, I suggest that freegan practices can be studied in relation to primitivism––a cultural strategy that advocates a return to nature, or alternatively, a return to a more ‘wild’ state of being. Individuals known as freegans are primarily young westerners who choose to fulfill their needs––be it sustenance, desire, or other essential services––without participating in the formal economy. To achieve this, they use activities aimed at reducing socio-ecological impact, the most popular being dumpster diving. As I will show, freegans employ these practices in an urban context, and frequently as a means for social change. Some people, however, question this process and criticize freegans for encouraging and practicing a lifestyle... (More)
In this study, I suggest that freegan practices can be studied in relation to primitivism––a cultural strategy that advocates a return to nature, or alternatively, a return to a more ‘wild’ state of being. Individuals known as freegans are primarily young westerners who choose to fulfill their needs––be it sustenance, desire, or other essential services––without participating in the formal economy. To achieve this, they use activities aimed at reducing socio-ecological impact, the most popular being dumpster diving. As I will show, freegans employ these practices in an urban context, and frequently as a means for social change. Some people, however, question this process and criticize freegans for encouraging and practicing a lifestyle that is based on race and class privileges. I argue that although this criticism is somewhat deserved, it is more indicative of other primitivists groups who use the same practices for expressive and narcissistic aims. The purpose of this study, then, is to demonstrate that freegan expressions of primitivism do not always overshadow freegan social strategies. In essence: not all primitivisms are the same. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
Haga, Eric LU
supervisor
organization
course
SANK01 20131
year
type
M2 - Bachelor Degree
subject
keywords
environmentalism, cultural strategies, anti-oppression politics, privilege, freeganism, primitivism
language
English
id
4588844
date added to LUP
2014-08-19 11:33:57
date last changed
2019-07-15 06:52:35
@misc{4588844,
  abstract     = {In this study, I suggest that freegan practices can be studied in relation to primitivism––a cultural strategy that advocates a return to nature, or alternatively, a return to a more ‘wild’ state of being. Individuals known as freegans are primarily young westerners who choose to fulfill their needs––be it sustenance, desire, or other essential services––without participating in the formal economy. To achieve this, they use activities aimed at reducing socio-ecological impact, the most popular being dumpster diving. As I will show, freegans employ these practices in an urban context, and frequently as a means for social change. Some people, however, question this process and criticize freegans for encouraging and practicing a lifestyle that is based on race and class privileges. I argue that although this criticism is somewhat deserved, it is more indicative of other primitivists groups who use the same practices for expressive and narcissistic aims. The purpose of this study, then, is to demonstrate that freegan expressions of primitivism do not always overshadow freegan social strategies. In essence: not all primitivisms are the same.},
  author       = {Haga, Eric},
  keyword      = {environmentalism,cultural strategies,anti-oppression politics,privilege,freeganism,primitivism},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Recycling of Things Past: Freegan Use of Primitivist Strategies and Urban Foraging},
  year         = {2013},
}