What is Waste?



An Arendtian approach to waste is offered which suggests that three common senses of waste refer to products of labor, work, and action, as explained in The Human Condition (1958). The paper offers examples of ecological, utilitarian and moral-political senses of waste, and argues that they are not incommensurable, but form part of a continuum with respect to their relative freedom from constraint. For this reason, different senses of waste offer distinct political dimensions for waste scholars that relate to boundaries between the human/non-human and critiques of oppression and injustice more broadly.


  • Year: 2018
  • Volume: 1 Issue: 1
  • Page/Article: 1
  • DOI: 10.5334/wwwj.9
  • Submitted on 4 Jan 2018
  • Accepted on 7 Feb 2018
  • Published on 9 Jul 2018
  • Peer Reviewed