Introduction: Auto-Anthropocenes

Patrick Laviolette*, Tatiana Argounova-Low* (Corresponding Author)

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalEditorialpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Is the planet on a one-way collision course with self-destruction? Are cars, roads and everything that goes along with them the main culprits for the end of the world as we know it? In addressing the nebulous, amorphous and material ties between vehicles and infrastructure, this Special Section of SA/AS provides some cross-cultural histories for better understanding commonplace as well as alternative paths, tracks and travel experiences. It also offers ethnographic narratives for the social lives, cultures and lived environments of everyday micro-journeys or the hyper-mobilities of human imaginaries. This collection of essays reaches a vantage point for a broad perspective on our long-term relationship with transport infrastructures – helping to assess their impact on both the built environment and the Earth’s ecosystems.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1008-1017
Number of pages10
JournalSocial Anthropology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This Special Section is based in part on two panels that we co-convened together. The first at the EASA2018 conference in Stockholm and the second at the SIEF2019 congress in Santiago de Compostela. We would like to thank all participants for their comments and the authors for their excellent presentations, only a handful of which are represented here. We are grateful to Thomas S. J. Smith for suggestions on our short introduction, as well as to the many anonymous reviewers who provided valuable comments and useful feedback to the authors. Many thanks to the editors of SA/AS for their assistance and advice.


  • Auto-Anthropocene
  • automotive transport
  • political ecology
  • road-scapes


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