The power of narrative: Climate skepticism and the deconstruction of science

Raul P. Lejano, Shondel J. Nero

Research output: Book/ReportBook


Narrative is the stuff of community. The Power of Narrative embarks on a quest to understand how narrative works in taking an inchoate group of individuals and turning it into a powerful social movement. To understand the force of narrative, the authors examine the particular phenomenon of climate skepticism. Somehow, the narrative of climate skepticism has been able to forge a movement and stake a challenge to the hegemony of the larger community of scientists on what is ostensibly a matter of science. The book asks: How is this achieved? What is the narrative of climate skepticism, and how has it evolved over time and diffused from place to place? Is it possible that this narrative shares with other issue narratives an underlying genetic code of sorts, a story that is more fundamental than all of these? How has the climate skeptical narrative contended with its other, which is the narrative-network of climate change science, and forged its own social movement? The outcome of this struggle between climate science and its denial has implications for society that go far beyond climatology. Using narrative and discourse analysis, the authors demonstrate how the narrative lens allows us unique insights into these questions. The book takes the reader on a journey, across times and places and social realms; throughout, we see the power of narrative at work, making believers, or skeptics, of us all.

Original languageEnglish (US)
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages188
ISBN (Electronic)9780197542101
StatePublished - Jan 1 2020


  • Climate denial
  • Climate skepticism
  • Discourse
  • Narrative
  • Narrative-network
  • Power of narrative
  • Public policy
  • Science and technology studies

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Social Sciences


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