Nordia Geographical Publications <p>NORDIA GEOGRAPHICAL PUBLICATIONS (NGP) is a non-profit, peer-reviewed scientific journal published by the Geographical Society of Northern Finland and the Geography Research Unit at the University of Oulu.</p> The Geographical Society of Northern Finland and the Geography Research Unit en-US Nordia Geographical Publications 1238-2086 Political Geographies of the Far-Right: The Environment, Space and Ideology in a Warming World <p>&nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;</p> Sonja Pietiläinen Ville Kellokumpu Copyright (c) 2024 2024-02-12 2024-02-12 53 1 5 12 10.30671/nordia.143230 Far-right localism as an environmental strategy in France <p>This paper discusses the promotion of localism as an environmental strategy by actors on the French far right. Far-right localism constitutes an example of mutating far-right ecological discourses on the denialism-ecofascism spectrum that further promotes far-right ideology under a ‘green’ banner. In this commentary I use empirical examples from the far right in France to show how this localism, which advocates a nativist rootedness in an exclusionary local, is upheld as a prerequisite for effective environmentalism. Such a strategy mobilises a reactionary conceptualisation of place that defends an exclusionary attachment to the local environment. Far-right localism feeds and revolves around an identitarian, naturalist and organicist conception of ecology typical of far-right ecologies, as well as the wish to supplant the left/right divide with a global/local one. This paper brings into conversation the fields of human geography and the political ecologies of the far right to contribute to a better understanding of constructed meanings of place by far-right actors in the context of climate change and ecological degradation. It furthermore encourages scholars across fields to keep investigating and disentangling complex affinities between ideologies of nature, identity (re-)production, belonging and resistance in conceptualisations and meanings of place.</p> Lise Benoist Copyright (c) 2022 Lise Benoist 2024-02-12 2024-02-12 53 1 111 121 10.30671/nordia.140962 The nightless nights of the ‘Nazi camp’: The Finnish far-right’s anti-climate politics in urban space <p>The globally growing climate justice movement has drawn attention to the accelerating climate change and the structural changes that climate mitigation would require. At the same time, there has been a surge and normalization of radical and extreme right-wing groups and parties. Their central element is not only ethno-nationalism and authoritarianism but also anti-climate politics, as they seek to obstruct climate politics, mobilize anti-scientific fictions and discredit scientists and activists. The far right’s intimidation of climate justice activists has been studied by examining its textual and visual discourses in online spaces, but less attention has been paid to far-right anti-climate practices in urban spaces. Drawing on social movement geographies, I aim to contribute to the discussions on far-right anti-climate politics by analysing the spatial strategies of the Finnish far-right’s counterprotests (the so-called ‘Nazi camp’) during Extinction Rebellion Finland’s ‘Summer Rebellion’ in June 2021 in Helsinki. By doing so, I show that far-right anti-climate politics (in the form of climate scepticism and intimidation of climate activists) are not limited to online spaces but emerge through different strategies in urban spaces by which the far-right competes for control over space and visibility and shapes public narratives of climate change and politics.</p> Sonja Pietiläinen Copyright (c) 2024 2024-02-12 2024-02-12 53 1 123 135 10.30671/nordia.143231 Shifting notions of the rural: Protests over traffic infrastructure and far-right normalization <p>Current far-right attitudes to the climate crisis are highly ambivalent, oscillating between the glorification of nature and ideological fragments of “fossil fascism”. Invocations of “the rural” serve as semantic mediations, enabling populist radical right parties (PRRPs) to apply seemingly frictionless and multi-scalar narratives of far-right ecology to rural protests. Applying relational and scale-sensitive approaches can help to disentangle how far-right discursive and political effort ties into and transforms spatial imaginaries. This paper discusses the role of rurality for populist scalar re-articulations and the impact of the latter on local communities. Drawing on findings from a qualitative longitudinal study in small towns in Brandenburg, Germany, the paper shows how local PRRP chapters create a specific notion of ‘rural rationality’ that helps to normalize far-right politics and politicians at the local scale, contrasting a proclaimed albeit abstract cordon sanitaire.</p> Valentin Domann Copyright (c) 2022 Valentin Domann 2024-02-12 2024-02-12 53 1 13 38 10.30671/nordia.122137 Looking beyond climate contrarianism: nationalism and the reterritorialization of climate discourse in Spain’s Vox party <p>Among European populist radical right (PRR) parties, the call for environmental protection has historically been embedded in ethnic nationalist ideas of the interrelation of land, nation, and culture. Despite a large body of literature on PRR environmentalism, however, the PRR’s climate politics remain understudied. This qualitative study investigates the climate politics of the PRR by analyzing climate discourse from Spain’s Vox party. A discourse analysis of party manifestos, press releases, and public statements from 2017–2022 investigates Vox’s discursive constructions of climate change and its potential solutions. The study finds that, although the party acknowledges climate change, it does so inconsistently, and its proposed climate policies do not fundamentally shift its nativist and populist political imagination. Instead, its discourse portrays multilateral climate action as a threat to the nation and locates climate solutions in the preservation of ruralism, traditional livelihoods, and national identity. The article argues that Vox constructs a nationalist climate discourse that reterritorializes climate change on the national level, asserts national innocence in the face of claims of global climate justice, and frames mainstream climate action as part of a broader globalist imposition that threatens the purity of national culture. The article concludes with reflections on what nationalist climate discourse may mean for attempts to mitigate the climate crisis.</p> Johanna Hanson Copyright (c) 2022 Johanna Hanson 2024-02-12 2024-02-12 53 1 39 61 10.30671/nordia.121511 Green Großraum: Carl Schmitt’s political ecology of space <p>How scholars conceptualize the driving forces of planetary crisis is intimately connected to how they conceptualize solutions to it. Recent scholarship has drawn on the work of Carl Schmitt, Nazi jurist and political philosopher, to articulate concepts in political ecology. These works of political ecology, however, do not engage with the problematic political history of the work and concepts developed by Schmitt. This article asks: what kinds of assumptions do we adopt when deploying Schmitt’s geographical, political, and ecological conceptual apparati? First, the article draws on the work of Minca and Rowan (2015, 2016) and Giaccaria and Minca (2016) to argue that Schmitt’s thought is geographical, that Nazi geographical thought was intimately tied to geographies of conquest on the part of the Nazis. It argues that Schmitt’s concept of Großraum or “greater space/ sphere of influence” is bound up with Schmitt’s and the Nazi’s politics of an ethnically/ racially motivated politics of “Friend versus Enemy.” The article then evaluates Schmitt’s concept of the political and considers its implications in relation to the environmental crisis of contemporary conjuncture, arguing that Schmitt’s amorphous conceptualization of the political allows the distinction between friend and enemy to be left open to interpretation, making it possible for both intellectuals and green political parties to articulate xenophobic and reactionary political positions in environmental terms.</p> John Peter Antonacci Copyright (c) 2022 John Peter Antonacci 2024-02-12 2024-02-12 53 1 63 81 10.30671/nordia.121455 Hindutva Civilizationism in India: Unravelling the Human-Ecological Conditions <p>India’s Hindutva movement, led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Bharatiya Janata Party, has risen to power in the world’s largest democracy and second-most populous country. Various scholars have examined how Hindu nationalism is rooted in civilizational themes; others have examined how ancient Hindu elements are employed in BJP environmental politics. Yet a comprehensive and interdisciplinary conceptualization of civilizationism that places it, firstly, at the heart of Hindutva and, secondly, confronts it as not solely a discursive or thematic tool but as the manifesting of physical control over citizens’ relationships to their material environment is lacking. This means approaching ‘civilization’ in the far right as a human-ecological structure and not only a historical bedrock of ethno-territorial and theocratic power. In order to conceptualize Hindutva civilizationism, I re-examine two well-known cases of Sangh Parivar environmental politics: (1) Hindutva geography and spatial violence; and (2) anti-meat and cow vigilante politics. Beyond serving as a discourse that ignites violence and far-right extremism, I showcase how the sounding board of ‘civilization’ encapsulates the relationship between sociopolitical and environmental far-right objectives, highlighting the ways that far-right civilizationism seeks to define human relationships with natural and built environments. Conceptualizing civilizationism in this way strengthens understandings of how the racial, ethno-national, and religious features of far-right politics are rooted in ecological doctrine that is often based on the social-material features of past ‘civilization’. This supports the primordial significance of civilizationism in far-right ideology beyond only the white supremacist far-right and ‘Western Civilization’.</p> Alexandra McFadden Copyright (c) 2022 Alexandra McFadden 2024-02-12 2024-02-12 53 1 83 96 10.30671/nordia.121459 Governing “decadent cities”: The far-right as agents of climate counterinsurgency <p>Ecological crisis has given rise to a range of discussions over “climate fascism,” “green nationalism,” “fossil fascism,” and “eco-fascism.” Several authors have advanced the thesis that climate adaptation will be shaped by an increase in authoritarian politics or an uptick in organized violence (e.g. at the borders of nation-states) as states deploy counterinsurgency tactics against climate refugees and environmental activists. My article inverts this proposition by arguing that far right politics emerges as a contingent possibility in the mode of counterinsurgency governance. I propose the framework of “relations of counterinsurgency” as a means of understanding how counterinsurgency manages crises of urban governability by remaking the spaces of uneven urbanization. I then argue that to theorize contemporary far right climate politics, we should ask what the term eco-fascism does rather than what it is. My argument is that, as climate change makes increasing claims upon political institutions, relations of counterinsurgency allow far right actors to constitute their agency and subjectivity.</p> Diren Valayden Copyright (c) 2022 Diren Valayden 2024-02-12 2024-02-12 53 1 97 110 10.30671/nordia.121505 Imagining Finland: negotiating the sense of self through return imaginaries <p>When embarking on a migration journey, migrants cultivate personal ideas of themselves ‘here’ and ‘there’. This includes one’s reflections about a possible return – the return imaginaries. They emerge from the time-, place- and person-specific ideas, attitudes, feelings and possibilities before, and after, relocation. Through a digital ethnographic study, this paper seeks to expand the research done on how the so-called ‘middling’ migrants negotiate the sense of self through return imaginaries. I discuss one such group, Finns, in the UK and ask ‘what is the role of return imaginaries in negotiating the sense of self in Finns’ translocal place-making in the UK?’. The results show that Finns’ return imaginaries function as a framework for positioning and reaffirming the self in relation to the UK and Finland during one’s migration trajectory. In relation to their idea of return, Finns negotiate the questions ‘who am I?’ and ‘who do I want to be?’. Through reflecting on the everydayness in the UK and Finland, and their ideas about return visits, Finns produce a ‘translocal sense of self’.</p> Evi-Carita Riikonen Copyright (c) 2022 Evi-Carita Riikonen 2024-02-12 2024-02-12 53 1 137 159 10.30671/nordia.113329