Climate change, migration, and the crisis of humanism


Journal Article


Baldwin, A.


Climate change, migration, and the crisis of humanism




Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Climate Change

Vol (No), pp



Climate change is more and more said to be a problem of migration. The common refrain is that climate change will bear in some way on patterns of human mobility, resulting in either insecurity, humanitarian crises, or all manner of inventive adaptive responses. The inherent challenge in such claims is, however, that of causality: the degree to which climate change influences migration alongside the myriad social, political, and economic reasons people migrate. This challenge is far from being settled. Importantly, the unsettled question of causality exposes how the crisis of humanism is central to the construction of the climate migrant or climate refugee. Coming to terms with this crisis means having to confront how issues of power and knowledge shape how we understand the relationship between climate change and migration. But even more importantly it means having to ask probing questions about what it means to be human today. The study develops these arguments through an engagement with the concept of the monster and with Timothy Morton’s concept of the hyperobject. For further resources related to this article, please visit the WIREs website.


Baldwin, A. (2017). Climate change, migration, and the crisis of humanism. Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Climate Change,  e460-n/a. DOI : 10.1002/wcc.460.