We need a new word for our new world and Sustainism is it, according to authors Michiel Schwarz and Joost Eiffers. Sustainism is the New Modernism is part cultural manifesto, part design book. Schwarz, a cultural theorist and innovator, and Eiffers a “symbol maker” and designer (the two are also childhood friends) have created a captivating book – in its written content but also in form and design – that’s hard not to get excited about.
Sustainism is relevant not just to the design community, but as a new cultural perspective
Positing that modernism (and postmodernism) ended with the 20th century, we are in the midst of a cultural paradigm shift that will allow us to effectively think about, engage with and act on the world’s big pursuits. Sustainism is this new ‘ism’ and Schwarz and Eiffers’ book offers the vocabulary and graphic symbolism to recognize, frame, and embrace what’s here and happening. With quotes from world leaders, journalists, and authors who describe what Schwarz and Eiffers have named, they say “manifestations of Sustainism are emerging in all of culture: from architecture and design to how we deal with food and our land, from media expressions and community to innovation and urban life.”
So What is Sustainism?
Schwarz and Eiffers assert that Sustainism is a way of thinking about the world that is responsible – ethically, socially and environmentally so; that it shifts the global vs local discussion to understand it as “all locals are globally connected” – we should no longer talk of ‘the global village’ but of a ‘globe of villages’. Sustainism also favours open source information and a networked, collaborative approach to innovation, technological and otherwise.
Sustainism is the New Modernism is hard to put down between its noble ideas, snappy graphics, bold typefaces, and historical quotes. Put it on your coffee table or give it as a gift to be sure to start an interesting dialogue.
Michiel Schwarz and Joost Eiffers
Sustainism is the New Modernism
A Cultural Manifesto for the Sustainist Era
D.A.P/ Distributed Art Publishers Inc.
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