What does it mean to live a good life in a time when the planet is overheating, the human population continues to steadily reach new peaks, oceans are turning more acidic, and fertile soils the world over are eroding at unprecedented rates? These and other simultaneous harms and threats demand creative responses at several levels of consideration and action.

Written by an international team of contributors, this book examines in-depth the relationship between sustainability and the good life. Drawing on wealth of theories, from social practice theory to architecture and design theory, and disciplines, such as anthropology and environmental philosophy, this volume promotes participatory action-research based approaches to encourage sustainability and wellbeing at local levels. It covers topical issues such the politics of prosperity, globalization, and indigenous notions of "the good life" and happiness". Finally it places a strong emphasis on food at the heart of the sustainability and good life debate, for instance binding the global south to the north through import and exports, or linking everyday lives to ideals within the dream of the good life, with cookbooks and shows.

This interdisciplinary book provides invaluable insights for researchers and postgraduate students interested in the contribution of the environmental humanities to the sustainability debate.

chapter |6 pages


ByKaren Lykke Syse, Martin Lee Mueller

chapter 1|20 pages

Enough is enough?

Re-imagining an ethics and aesthetics of sustainability for the twenty-first century
ByLawrence Buell

chapter 2|16 pages

The essayistic spirit of Utopia

ByThorunn Gullaksen Endreson

chapter 3|12 pages

Towards a sustainable flourishing

Democracy, hedonism and the politics of prosperity
ByKate Soper

chapter 4|25 pages

Is the good life sustainable?

A three-decade study of values, happiness and sustainability in Norway
ByOttar Hellevik

chapter 5|20 pages

Well-being and environmental responsibility

ByBengt Brülde

chapter 6|11 pages

The problem of habits for a sustainable transformation

ByHarold Wilhite

chapter 7|15 pages

Well-being in sustainability transitions

Making use of needs
ByFelix Rauschmayer, Ines Omann

chapter 8|20 pages

Human needs and the environment reconciled

Participatory action-research for sustainable development in Peru
ByMònica Guillen-Royo

chapter 10|18 pages

Celebrity chefs, ethical food consumption and the good life

ByKaren Lykke Syse

chapter 11|21 pages

Follow the food

How eating and drinking shape our cities
ByJesper Pagh

chapter 12|20 pages

Caged welfare

Evading the good life for egg-laying hens
ByKristian Bjørkdahl

chapter 13|20 pages

Being salmon, being human

Notes on an ecological turn in the modern narrative tradition
ByMartin Lee Mueller

chapter 14|13 pages


Beyond the paradox of the big, bad wolf
ByThomas Hylland Eriksen