Just a few dozens of miles north from where I sit here typing away, a group of solarpunks is reimagining the state’s only big city through a series of proposals for metro-wide transformative infrastructure projects.
Struggling and rebelling against the boss is solarpunk af. This is especially true in our world today where 70% of climate change emissions come not from our homes and individual habits, but from the bosses, their companies and corporations, their institutions of power.
What if humans came together to solve the climate crisis? What if people from marginalized groups all felt safe in society? The solarpunk genre imagines creative answers to these questions.
Utopianism doesn’t have be to pie in the sky and impractical. It doesn’t have to be unachievable. Real utopia can exist. We can imagine a better future and create a new world for the next generations.
In a moment where rightwing extremism continues to boldly rear its ugly head, books like Recognize Fascism are vital and welcomed additions to our cultural conversation.
The high price tag of going green—not to mention the unrealistic expectations that we can all live up to the purity tests involved in focusing on individual solutions—is one reason why the spotlight solarpunk places on community values and collective solutions is so valuable.
community and individuality aren’t opposites. They don’t need to be in competition. They don’t have to be, and we can’t allow them to be at odds with each other. We can create healthy local communities rooted in democracy and diversity, composed of individuals whose self-reliance and DIY spirit contribute to and make the community stronger, communities that are spaces where those who might need more reliance on others, for any number of reasons, can also contribute and thrive.
Solarpunk is an excellent example of a space where speculative literature and art come together with present day, real-world activism in a shared purpose to build, create, and be disruptive.