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The Idea of Climate Change as a Belief System: Why Climate Activism Resembles a Religious Movement

Bhagwat, Shonil A.; Economou, Anastasia and Thornton, Thomas F. (2016). The Idea of Climate Change as a Belief System: Why Climate Activism Resembles a Religious Movement. GAIA - Ecological Perspectives for Science and Society, 25(2) pp. 94–98.

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The idea of climate change has been enforced by its similarities with belief systems. It may come as a surprise to scientists, the media and climate activists participating in climate change discussions that they are unconsciously following models rooted in belief systems. These models include an emphasis on existential anxiety and the public expression of commitments. The discussions around the severity of climate change and individual sacrifices through everyday moral choices, however, show that addressing climate change may require a shift of focus from political leadership to more grassroots activism.

Item Type: Journal Item
Copyright Holders: 2016 The Authors
ISSN: 0940-5550
Keywords: belief systems; climate activism; evolutionary psychology; interconnectedness; interdependence; sustainability
Academic Unit/School: Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS) > Politics, Philosophy, Economics, Development, Geography
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS)
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS) > Psychology
Research Group: OpenSpace Research Centre (OSRC)
International Development & Inclusive Innovation
Item ID: 46740
Depositing User: Shonil Bhagwat
Date Deposited: 04 Jul 2016 10:03
Last Modified: 09 Feb 2017 17:16
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