Mimi Sheller


On her book Mobility Justice: The Politics of Movement in an Age of Extremes

Cover Interview of April 24, 2019


I believe that a full transition in the currently dominant fossil-fuel based automobility system will only take place when we simultaneously address the issues of social inequality that underpin the un-sustainability of the current system and we begin to promote mobility justice as integral to sustainability. Spatial and cultural contexts for dwelling and moving must be redesigned to promote both sustainable mobility and mobility justice. This may mean restricting or reducing the mobilities and energy consumption of the kinetic elite. Children around the world are currently mobilizing climate marches and school strikes to get politicians to listen to them. They tell us that we need to urgently change the way our current system works. I hope this book will contribute to that movement.

In the conclusion of the book I call for “commoning mobility” or creating a “mobile commons” as a possible way forward toward more just and sustainable mobilities. I hope to develop this concept further in my next project, and I hope to find others who want to work on this. I describe commoning mobility as a verb: the enactment of cooperative social territories and shared infrastructures for moving, sharing, and conserving places. Mobile commons have been cooperatively produced by human relation to others, both human and more-than-human, through common passage, translation, and co-usage over time. Commoning mobility empowers assemblages of people-plants-animals-places to exercise generative forms of autonomous social cooperation outside of capitalism. How can we build on and sustain the mobile commons and take our world back from extractivist capitalism and the violent security state?