Jim talks with Ashley Colby & Jason Snyder about the growing movement of Doomer Optimism. They discuss Ashley’s coinage of the term, doomer optimism as an open-source structure of feeling, avoiding pathologies of despair & naive optimism, balancing philosophy with action, cosmopolitan localism, healthy skepticism, theory-of-change pluralism, building local capacity toward the meso-scale, the social power of skill-building, Tucker Max’s surprise embrace of the movement & what to do when movements take unexpected turns, doomer optimism’s mainstream potential, recentering the hard-won knowledge of longtime homesteaders & builders, and much more.
- Episode Transcript
- JRS EP122 – Ashley Colby on Subsistence Agriculture
- Doomer Optimist Podcast
- Doomer Optimist Substack
- “A Journey to GameB,” by Jim Rutt
- “The Liminal Web: Mapping An Emergent Subculture Of Sensemakers, Meta-Theorists & Systems Poets,” by Joe Lightfoot
- Both/And Podcast
- “Doomer Optimism: What I See Coming, & How I’m Preparing,” by Tucker Max
Ashley Colby is an Environmental Sociologist who studied at Washington State University. In her book she explores subsistence food production as a potentially revolutionary act. She is interested in and passionate about the myriad creative ways in which people are forming new social worlds in resistance to the failures of late capitalism and resultant climate disasters. Ashley is a qualitative researcher, so she tends to focus on the informal spaces of innovation. She is now focused on doing anything she can to foment local, decentralized networks of people who can get us to the next iteration of society, and fast.
Dr. Jason Snyder has an educational background in applied economics and geography, and is currently teaching in the Department of Sustainable Development at Appalachian State University with a special interest in local food systems. He is also a beginning homesteader in the Appalachian hills, a meditation enthusiast, a podcaster (Both/And, Doomer Optimism), and a proponent of societal transition towards a more resilient and regenerative system state.