Alyssa Battistoni


In June 2022, Alyssa Battistoni, assistant professor of political science, published a book review in the bimonthly journal New Left Review. The work, titled “Freedom and Catastrophe,” explores how Pierre Charbonnier’s book “Affluence and Freedom: An Environmental History of Political Ideas” narrates the relationship between freedom and modernity in the face of ecological crisis.

Battistoni explains that Charbonnier’s definition of modernity is not a singular phenomenon, but is rather both “a project of advancing a set of political rights and values and a technological project of remaking the physical world.” By tracing Charbonnier’s conceptions from the pre-industrial age to the Anthropocene, Battistoni analyzes how human civilization has used the affluence generated from utilizing or transforming resources in nature as a vehicle for modulating human relations.