Waste tours. Narratives, infrastructures and gazes in interplay
Waste management makes life in cities possible. Paradoxically, well-functioning waste infrastructures can contribute to obscure the link between production, consumption and nature. One way to render waste infrastructures, and their environmental consequences, visible is through guided tours. School children around the world visit waste infrastructures through guided tours. Informed by an ethnographic study of several waste tours in Sweden, this paper explores how waste and waste infrastructure is gazed upon and represented during guided tours, and how plots/scripts (narratives), sceneries (infrastructure), guides and visitors (gaze) interact and coalesce to reproduce these representations. The paper contributes to the emerging body of literature on discard and waste studies by introducing the concepts of «the waste gaze» and suggesting the need for a new «consuming less» narrative, beyond narratives of «wasting less».
School of Public Administration/Förvaltningshögskolan
A revised version of this paper is published in Etnografia e ricerca: Zapata, Patrik and Zapata Campos, María José (2018) Waste tours: narratives, infrastructures and gazes in interplay. Etnografia Ricerca Qualitativa, 11 (1) 97-118, DOI: 10.3240/89696
Zapata Campos, María José
School of Public Administration Working Paper Series