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Community On Land

Overview

This book looks to the history of the 'the commons' in American and European social thought to better understand contemporary environmental problems. The authors show how American law governing lands and resources relies on the individualist assumptions of Enlightenment thinkers, who regarded land as 'wasted' when not being 'improved' by European agriculture or colonization. Curry and McGuire trace the history of this philosophical and historical legacy and reveal its strong influence on American concepts on ...

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Overview

This book looks to the history of the 'the commons' in American and European social thought to better understand contemporary environmental problems. The authors show how American law governing lands and resources relies on the individualist assumptions of Enlightenment thinkers, who regarded land as 'wasted' when not being 'improved' by European agriculture or colonization. Curry and McGuire trace the history of this philosophical and historical legacy and reveal its strong influence on American concepts on community and land. They not only reveal the law's insufficient comprehension of community rights, but they also advocate realistic policy alternatives whereby community governance can better solve the challenges of resource management and other American social problems.

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Editorial Reviews

Choice
In a well-reasoned, coherent . . . discussion, Curry and McGuire argue for a renewal of the 'concept of community' to counter the pervasive influence of individualism in all its form. A valuable contribution.
Wes Jackson
When people, land, and community are as one, all members prosper. When regarded as competing agents, all suffer. These authors show what we must do to get it right.
CHOICE
In a well-reasoned, coherent . . . discussion, Curry and McGuire argue for a renewal of the 'concept of community' to counter the pervasive influence of individualism in all its form. A valuable contribution.
Frederick H. Buttel
Curry and McGuire's provocative analysis shows that the privatization and degradation of the American 'commons' have deep historical roots within the rise of industrial civilization and of the individualistic capitalist ethos. But they also show that history is now being rewritten as promising new alternatives to the degradation of land emerge within American and Third world rural communities. A critical analysis of a critical social and environmental problem.
From The Critics
Curry (dean for research and scholarship, Calvin College, Michigan) and McGuire (sociology, Muskingum College, Ohio) examine the European legacy of agriculture and colonization on American concepts of community and land. Focusing on the social and environmental consequences, they advocate community governance as a policy alternative. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780742501614
  • Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
  • Publication date: 6/28/2002
  • Series: New Social Formations Series
  • Pages: 284
  • Product dimensions: 0.64 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 6.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Janel M. Curry is the dean for research and scholarship at Calvin College in Michigan. Steven McGuire is associate professor and chair of the sociology department at Muskingum College in New Concord, Ohio.

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Table of Contents

Chapter 1 Series Editor's Foreword Chapter 2 Preface Chapter 3 Introduction Part 4 Historical Overview Chapter 5 Corporate Colonialism Chapter 6 Colonizer Enlightenment Chapter 7 Industrial Transformations Chapter 8 A New Leviathan in the New World Chapter 9 The Individual and Natural Resource Management Part 10 Current Consequences Chapter 11 Aggregated in Theory Chapter 12 Monad Law Chapter 13 Land in Practice Chapter 14 Forestry Management Philosophies Chapter 15 A Tale of Two Countries Part 16 Re-mediation Optic Chapter 17 In Thought Chapter 18 Community on Land Chapter 19 Conclusion: The Road to a Place

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