Skip to main content

Politicising the study of sustainable living practices.

Denegri-Knott, J., Nixon, E. and Abraham, K., 2018. Politicising the study of sustainable living practices. Consumption Markets and Culture, 21 (6), 554-573.

Full text available as:

consumption_markets.pdf - Accepted Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial No Derivatives.


DOI: 10.1080/10253866.2017.1414048


In studies of consumption, social theories of practice foreground the purchasing and use of resources not for intrinsic pleasure but rather in the routine accomplishment of “normal” ways of living. In this paper, we argue that a key strength of theories of practice lies in their ability to expose questions of power in the construction of normality, but that this has been largely overlooked. Since practice theories are leveraged in understanding urgent questions of climate change, we use ethnographic data of a sustainable community in England to examine the normative dimension of sustainability. Using Michel Foucault's approach to practice, we elucidate the social technologies operating in the community that govern sustainable practices in the absence of a singular cultural authority. We illustrate how shared understanding guiding normative sustainable practice was negotiated and maintained through collective ethical work, the paramount importance of interpersonal harmony, and the continual formation of ethical subjects.

Item Type:Article
Additional Information:This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Consumption Markets and Culture on 04/01/2018, available online:
Uncontrolled Keywords:Foucault; dispositive; power; practice theory; regimes of practice; sustainable consumption
Group:Faculty of Media & Communication
ID Code:30397
Deposited By: Symplectic RT2
Deposited On:26 Feb 2018 09:45
Last Modified:14 Mar 2022 14:09


Downloads per month over past year

More statistics for this item...
Repository Staff Only -