Ecological Ethics / Edition 1

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This book is a major new introduction to the field of ecological ethics. Taking issue with the common assumption that existing human ethics can be 'extended' to meet the demands of the ongoing ecological crisis, Patrick Curry shows that a new and truly ecological ethic is both possible and urgently needed. With this distinctive proposition in mind, Curry introduces and discusses all the major concepts needed to understand the full range of ecological ethics.

Focussing first on the major concepts of ethics - religious and secular - and value, Curry then examines the gradations of ecological ethics. He discusses light green, shallow or anthropomorphic ethics with the examples of stewardship, lifeboat ethics, and social ecology; mid-green or intermediate ethics represented by animal liberation/rights and biocentrism; and dark green, deep, or ecocentric ethics. Particular attention is given to the various kinds of ecocentric ethics, such as the Land Ethic, The Gaia Hypothesis, and Deep Ecology and its offshoots: Deep Green Theory, Left Biocentrism and the Earth Manifesto. Ecofeminism is also considered in this context. The concluding chapters discuss green ethics as post-secular, moral pluralism and pragmatism, green citizenship, and human population in the light of ecological ethics.

This comprehensive and wide-ranging textbook offers a radical but critical introduction to the subject. It will be of great interest to students, activists, and to a wider public concerned with the ecocrisis, its main theories, debates, and possible solutions.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Curry makes a challenging subject accessible, especially to students ... a fine little book."
Ethics and the Environment

"A profoundly useful and informative guide."
Morning Star

"An exhaustive and thorough overview of what constitutes 'ethics' when dealing with humanity's effects on the planet ... This book provides a radical and cutting-edge look at contemporary Green ethics."
Journal for the Study of Religion, Nature and Culture

"As a concise and very accessible primer, it qualifies eminently as required reading for any university-level course on ecological ethics. Curry is a deep thinker, fully alert to the need for grounding critique in a consistent philosophical soil and respectfully cautious about hastening to polemical judgements."
The Structurist

"The book is straightforward, clear, and most important, an overview of the primary doctrines in environmental ethics. Above all, it is down to earth. Undergraduates love that."
Organization and the Environment

"A lively and intelligent book that brings much-needed good sense to bear on a crucially important subject."
Mary Midgley, formerly University of Newcastle

"Ecological ethics is a new discipline, but it is already extremely rich. We urgently need a guidebook that unravels the different strands in ecological philosophy and links them with practical issues about the relations of humans with the non-human world. Patrick Curry has given us that book."
John Gray, London School of Economics and Political Science

"This book is a brilliant introduction to the ethical basis of the ecology movement. It is a handbook for survival – for ourselves and for our planet."
Paul Watson, Founder and President of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, Co-founder of Greenpeace and National Director of the Sienna Club USA

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780745629087
  • Publisher: Wiley, John & Sons, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 11/15/2005
  • Edition description: REV
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 224
  • Product dimensions: 5.52 (w) x 8.60 (h) x 0.48 (d)

Meet the Author

Patrick Curry is Senior Lecturer at the Sophia Centre, Bath Spa University College.
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Table of Contents

  • Acknowledgements
  • Chapter 1: Introduction
  • " This Book
  • " Value and Nature
  • " Ethics and Grub
  • " What's New?
  • " Transparency
  • Chapter 2: Ecological Crisis
  • " The Signs
  • " Analysing Ecocrisis
  • " Science and Technology
  • Chapter 3: Ethics
  • " What is Ethics?
  • " Ethical Realism vs. Relativism
  • " The Naturalistic Fallacy
  • " Religious Ethics
  • " Secular Ethics
  • Chapter 4: Three Schools of Ethics
  • " Virtue Ethics
  • " Deontology ('Rights')
  • " Utilitarianism ('Consequences')
  • Chapter 5: Value
  • " Some Issues
  • " Anthropocentrism
  • " Ecocentrism
  • Chapter 6: Light Green or Shallow (Anthropocentric) Ethics
  • " What is a Light Green Ethic?
  • " Lifeboat Ethics
  • Chapter 7: Mid-green or Intermediate Ethics
  • " Animal Liberation
  • " Animal Rights
  • " Biocentrism
  • Chapter 8: Dark Green or Deep (Ecocentric) Ethics
  • " A Suggested Definition
  • " The Land Ethic
  • " Gaia Theory
  • " Deep Ecology
  • " Deep-Green Theory
  • " Left Biocentrism
  • " The Earth Manifesto
  • " Ecofeminism
  • Chapter 9: Green Ethics as Post-Secular
  • " Dogmatic Secularism
  • " An Ecocentric Spirituality
  • Chapter 10: Moral Pluralism and Pragmatism
  • " The Poverty of Monism
  • " The Consequences of Pluralism
  • Chapter 11: Green citizenship
  • " Making it Real
  • " A Long Revolution?
  • " Ecological Republicanism
  • " A Note on Cunning Wisdom
  • Chapter 12: A Case-Study: Human Overpopulation
  • " The Problem
  • " Analysing Overpopulation
  • " What Overpopulation Is and is Not
  • " Overpopulation and Ecocentrism
  • Postscript
  • Notes
  • References
  • Index
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