Cover of Environmental Ethics
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1. Environmental Ethics: Volume > 43 > Issue: 3
News and Notes
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2. Environmental Ethics: Volume > 43 > Issue: 3
Nicholas Geiser Reciprocity as an Environmental Virtue
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Three recent developments in environmental ethics—interest in virtue and character, concern for psychological realism, and collective action required to address global ecological challenges—are in tension with one another. For example, virtue ethical approaches in environmental ethics face objections from “situationist” critique and the strategic dimensions of collective action. This article proposes a conception of reciprocity as a response to this challenge for environmental virtue ethics. Environmental ethics has been traditionally skeptical of reciprocity due to its associations with self-interest, instrumental rationality, and well-defined contractual interactions. However, reciprocity can also be understood as a moral disposition of social agents who wish to respond proportionately and fittingly to the benefits they receive from others. Reciprocity is a psychologically robust moral disposition appropriate to contexts of strategic interaction underlying a variety of conservation and common pool resource challenges. As an environmental virtue, reciprocity’s example demonstrates that environmental virtue ethics need not give up psychological realism or concern with collective action.
3. Environmental Ethics: Volume > 43 > Issue: 3
Andrew J. Corsa John Cage, Henry David Thoreau, Wild Nature, Humility, and Music
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John Cage and Henry David Thoreau draw attention to the indeterminacy of wild nature and imply humans cannot entirely control the natural world. This paper argues Cage and Thoreau each encourages his audience to recognize their own human limitations in relation to wildness, and thus each helps his audience to develop greater humility before nature. By reflecting on how Thoreau’s theory relates to Cage’s music, we can recognize how Cage’s music contributes to audiences’ environmental moral education. We can appreciate the role of music in helping audiences to develop values conducive to environmentally sustainable practices.
4. Environmental Ethics: Volume > 43 > Issue: 3
Matthew Crippen Africapitalism, Ubuntu, and Sustainability
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Ubuntu originated in small-scale societies in precolonial Africa. It stresses metaphysical and moral interconnectedness of humans, and newer Africapitalist approaches absorb ubuntu ideology, with the aims of promoting community wellbeing and restoring a love of local place that global free trade has eroded. Ecological degradation violates these goals, which ought to translate into care for the nonhuman world, in addition to which some sub-Saharan thought systems promote environmental concern as a value in its own right. The foregoing story is reinforced by field research on African hunting operations that appear—counterintuitively—to reconcile conservation with business imperatives and local community interests. Though acknowledging shortcomings, I maintain these hunting enterprises do, by and large, adopt Africapitalist and ubuntu attitudes to enhance community wellbeing, environmental sustainability, and long-term economic viability. I also examine how well-intentioned Western conservation agendas are neocolonial impositions that impede local control while exacerbating environmental destruction and socioeconomic hardship. Ubuntu offers a conciliatory epistemology, which Africapitalism incorporates, and I conclude by considering how standard moral theories and political divisions become less antagonistic within these sub-Saharan frameworks, so even opponents can find common cause.
5. Environmental Ethics: Volume > 43 > Issue: 3
Manuel Rodeiro Justice and Ecocide: A Rawlsian Account
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According to an environmental application of Rawlsian principles of justice, the well-ordered society cannot tolerate the perpetration of certain environmental harms. This paper gives an account of those harms committed in the form of ecocide. The concept of ecocide is developed, as well as the ideal of eco-relational pluralism, as conceptual tools for defending citizens’ environmental interests. This paper aims to identify persuasive and reasonably acceptable justice claims for compelling states to curtail environmentally destructive activities through recourse to principles firmly established in the liberal tradition, while simultaneously exploring the limitations of such an approach.
book reviews
6. Environmental Ethics: Volume > 43 > Issue: 3
Michael Paul Nelson J. Michael Scott, John A. Wiens, Beatrice Van Horne, and Dale D. Goble. Shepherding Nature: The Challenge of Conservation Reliance
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7. Environmental Ethics: Volume > 43 > Issue: 3
Bjørn Kristensen Lori Gruen, ed. Critical Terms for Animal Studies
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8. Environmental Ethics: Volume > 43 > Issue: 3
Samantha Noll David Kaplan. Food Philosophy: An Introduction
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