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1. Environmental Ethics: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
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2. Environmental Ethics: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
R. Edward Grumbine Wildness, Wise Use, and Sustainable Development
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Ideas of wilderness in North America are evolving toward some new configuration. Current wilderness ideology, among other weaknesses, has been charged with encouraging a radical separation between people and nature and with being inadequate to serve the protection of biodiversity. Sustainable development and “wise use” privatization of wildlands have been offered as alternatives to the Western wilderness concept. I review this wilderness debate and argue that critical distinctions between wildness and wilderness and self and other must be settled before alternatives can be considered. I look closely at arguments for sustainable development and argue that the limits on the human use of nature are discounted and technological management of wildlands is emphasized. I also argue that the “wise use” response to wilderness is a radically utilitarian option that does not contribute to evolving ideas of wilderness or sustainability and that replacing the sustainable development idea with sustainable landscape protection might better serve both wildness and human projects. Finally, I offer the ways of life of post-migratory ecosystem-based cultures as models of appropriate human behavior within a management framework of habitat protection for viable populations of all native species and conclude that our purpose in protecting wildness is not to preserve nature or to improve it, but rather to learn a sense of limits from it and to model culture after it.
3. Environmental Ethics: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
Robert R. Higgins Race, Pollution, and the Mastery of Nature
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Racial environmental inequities, documented in research over the past ten years, have deep cultural sources in the connections between the concept of social pollution as it has operated in U.S. race relations and the pollution of minority communities, both of which are, in part, the expression of our dominant cultural ethic and project of mastering nature. The project of mastering nature requires thedisciplining of “human nature” in a context of social power in order to dominate “outward” or “external” nature for the purposes of production and consumption. In disciplining human nature, our ethics and practices of work and gender have fostered the repression and projection of sensuality, widely construed, onto African-Americans in particular. This racial “other” has been historically segregated in our society through social pollution taboos. Social pollution practices, in turn, facilitate the disproportionate environmental pollution of minority communities by rendering such pollution, like the communities themselves, less visible and therefore less of a threat to white centers of power. This fit between social and environmental pollution is expressed in the notion of “appropriately polluted space.” Attempts to understand and correct racial environmental inequities will founder unless these deeper cultural connections are recognized and challenged. Moreover, attempts to redefine an environmentally benign “self” in the Americancontext require that the historical “other” of race be confronted and transcended.
discussion papers
4. Environmental Ethics: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
James W. Nickel, Eduardo Viola Integrating Environmentalism and Human Rights
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The environmental and human rights movements have valuable contributions to make to each other. Environmentalists can contribute to the greening of human rights by getting the human rights movement to recognize a right to a safe environment, to see humans as part of nature, and to begin considering the idea that nature may have claims of its own. The human rights movement can contribute to environmentalism by getting environmentalists to recognize that they have strong reasons to support rights to political participation, freedom from violence, due process of law, education, and adequate nutrition.
5. Environmental Ethics: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
William O. Stephens Stoic Naturalism, Rationalism, and Ecology
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Cheney’s claim that there is a subtextual affinity between ancient Stoicism and deep ecology is historically unfounded, conceptually unsupported, and misguided from a scholarly viewpoint. His criticisms of Stoic thought are thus merely ad hominem diatribe. A proper examination of the central ideas of Stoic ethics reveals the coherence and insightfulness of Stoic naturalism and rationalism. While not providing the basis for a contemporary environmental ethic, Stoicism, nonetheless, contains some very fruitful ethical concepts.
6. Environmental Ethics: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
Knut A. Jacobsen The Institutionalization of the Ethics of “Non-Injury” toward All “Beings” in Ancient India
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The principle of non-injury toward all living beings (ahimsā) in India was originally a rule restraining human interaction with the natural environment. I compare two discourses on the relationship between humans and the natural environment in ancient India: the discourse of the priestly sacrificial cult and the discourse of the renunciants. In the sacrificial cult, all living beings were conceptualized as food. The renunciants opposed this conception and favored the ethics of non-injury toward all beings (plants, animals, etc.), which meant that no living being should be food for another. The first represented an ethics modeled on the power that the eater has over the eaten while the second attempted to overturn this food chain ethics. The ethics of non-injury ascribed ultimate value to every individual living being. As a critique of the individualistic ethics of noninjury, a holistic ethics was developed that prescribed the unselfish performance of one’s duties for the sake of the functioning of the natural system. Vegetarianismbecame a popular adaptation of the ethics of non-injury. These dramatic changes in ethics in ancient India are suggestive for the possibility of dramatic changes in environmental ethics today.
7. Environmental Ethics: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
Arthur J. Fabel Environmental Ethics and the Question of Cosmic Purpose
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In the context of the earlier views of John Haught, I discuss the paradox that while environmental philosophers seek a viable ethics, advocates of the majority view, scientific materialism, deny an intrinsic value to nature. I argue that a new science, just now arising, may set aside this pessimistic view, replacing it with a conception of the cosmos as a self-organizing genesis. Its method is holistic and integrative rather than analytical and divisive. After a survey of its overall outlines, I introduce some salient features of the central trend, a key property, and a universal complementarity and explore their relevance for a scientifically based natural ethics that takes into account an ecological self, animal awareness, and cooperative communities.
book reviews
8. Environmental Ethics: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
Deborah Slicer Ecofeminism: Women, Animals, Nature
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9. Environmental Ethics: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
Jim Cheney In the Spirit of the Earth: Rethinking History and Time
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10. Environmental Ethics: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
David Orr Green Delusions: An Environmentalist Critique of Radical Environmentalism
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11. Environmental Ethics: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
Frederik Kaufman Warren on the Logic of Domination
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12. Environmental Ethics: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
Ron Erickson On Environmental Virtue Ethics
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