Geosocial Polar Futures and the Material Geopolitics of Frozen Soils

Klaus Dodds, Juan Salazar

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Polar soils are sites of and for promissory investment and speculative intent. To
reappraise the ways in which we “think-with” soils in the polar regions, both materially and conceptually, we link our efforts to calls to think “beyond existing dependencies of social worlds upon particular geological strata and to imagine alternative ‘geosocial’
futures” (Clark and Yusoff 2017: 3). This has implications for thinking about a novel
“geo-logic” of the polar regions (Salazar 2019). Drawing on the notion of “geosocialities,” which Palsson and Swanson define as “the commingling of the geologic and the social and the sensibilities involved” (2016: 151), we also wish to picture the intricacies of geology in its relation to social life. In the case of the Arctic region, as Michael Bravo has shown, dominant discourses of Arctic geopolitics and geosocialities are often too blind to the realities of life in the Arctic as peoples and ecosystems are persistently trivialized or where an alternative arrangement of imaginings of a habitable Arctic interwoven with densely linked networks of Inuit routes, rich and deep in cultural meanings, is often rendered invisible (Bravo and Sörlin 2002; Bravo 2018).
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThinking with Soils
Subtitle of host publicationMaterial Politics and Social Theory
EditorsJuan Salazar, Celine Granjou, Matthew Kearnes, Anna Krzywoszynska, Manuel Tironi
Place of PublicationLondon
PublisherBloomsbury Academic
Number of pages17
ISBN (Print)9781350109575
Publication statusPublished - 23 Jul 2020


  • Polar Soils
  • Permafrost
  • Ice
  • Thawing
  • Geosocial futures
  • Geopolitics
  • Frozen

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