Unit 2 Destination Discussion: Hurricane Sandy

Advance Reading: Members of the group should read Chapter Two and the section from Chapter Three,  “Rebuilding, and Reinventing, the Public Sphere”of This Changes Everything.


Climate change is sometimes discussed as a “class-neutral” problem for society, the effects of which will be felt by all social groups.

  • In what ways does Klein challenge this idea in the sections we read for today?
  • Are there other ways not mentioned by Klein in which climate change might disproportionately affect certain communities and individuals?
  • Are there experiences you’ve had or events you’ve witnessed that lead you to support or argue with the “class neutral” idea of climate change?
  • Is there anything else you would wish to add to these chapters? Any voices or ideas Klein leaves out or shortchanges, in your view?

We’ve been reflecting together in this unit on the various identities and privileges we may bring with us to our work, and how they can both help and hinder us as we try to become more effective allies. The stories in Klein’s book so far feature people with very different levels of agency and social power – from major international corporations and wealthy governments to people trapped in New York’s public housing projects during natural disasters.

In light of your reading and your reflections for this unit:

  • Are there ways in which you “see yourself” in the reading for today?
  • Are there people or institutions to which you particularly relate in the stories told so far? How would you situate yourself, if at all, in the narrative Klein is building? How do these stories relate to the themes of our unit on “Who We Are Together,” and our broader conversation about identity and privilege?

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