Environment and Society: A Critical Introduction / Edition 1

Environment and Society: A Critical Introduction / Edition 1

by Paul Robbins, John Hintz, Sarah A. Moore
     
 

There is a good reason why global climate change, atmospheric pollution, deforestation, and the rapid decline of biodiversity are such hotbed issues. Interactions between human society and the environment have never been more complex – or more critical to our survival – than now. Environment and Society: A Critical Introduction presents

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Overview

There is a good reason why global climate change, atmospheric pollution, deforestation, and the rapid decline of biodiversity are such hotbed issues. Interactions between human society and the environment have never been more complex – or more critical to our survival – than now. Environment and Society: A Critical Introduction presents readers with a concise overview of the diverse conceptual tools and traditions available for thinking about, explaining, and addressing the crucial environmental challenges we face today. The authors vividly demonstrate how theory can illuminate pressing environmental problems in the world around us by applying the most recent theoretical concepts to a variety of real-world objects – from French fries and wolves to bottled water and carbon dioxide. At the same time, they stress the ways that different, and often conflicting, conclusions about environmental issues can be reached, depending on varying perspectives, starting positions, and assumptions.

Accessible and insightful, this book provides an essential foundation for shaping our understanding of one of the most important issues of our times.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781405187602
Publisher:
Wiley
Publication date:
03/22/2010
Series:
Critical Introductions to Geography Series, #9
Pages:
312
Product dimensions:
7.40(w) x 9.60(h) x 0.80(d)

Table of Contents

List of Figures.

List of Tables.

List of Text Boxes.

Acknowledgments.

1 Introduction: The View from Clifton Bridge.

What Is This Book?

Part I Approaches and Perspectives.

2 Population and Scarcity.

A Crowded Desert City.

The Problem of "Geometric" Growth.

Population, Development, and Environment Impact.

The Other Side of the Coin: Population and Innovation.

Limits to Population: An Effect Rather than a Cause?

Thinking with Population.

3 Markets and Commodities.

The Bet.

Managing Environmental Bads: The Coase Theorem.

Market Failure.

Market-Based Solutions to Environmental Problems.

Beyond Market Failure: Gaps between Nature and Economy.

Thinking with Markets.

4 Institutions and "The Commons".

Controlling Carbon?

The Prisoner's Dilemma.

The Tragedy of the Commons.

The Evidence and Logic of Collective Action.

Crafting Sustainable Environmental Institutions.

Are All Commoners Equal? Does Scale Matter?

Thinking with Institutions.

5 Environmental Ethics.

The Price of Cheap Meat.

Improving Nature: From Biblical Tradition to John Locke.

Gifford Pinchot vs. John Muir in Yosemite, California.

Aldo Leopold and "The Land Ethic".

Liberation for Animals!

Holism, Scientism, and Pragmatism? Oh My!

Thinking with Ethics.

6 Risks and Hazards.

The Great Flood of 1993.

Environments as Hazard.

The Problem of Risk Perception.

Risk as Culture.

Beyond Risk: The Political Economy of Hazards.

Thinking with Hazards and Risk.

7 Political Economy.

The Strange Logic of "Under-pollution".

Labor, Accumulation, and Crisis.

Production of Nature.

Global Capitalism and the Ecology of Uneven Development.

Social Reproduction and Nature.

Environments and Economism.

Thinking with Political Economy.

8 Social Construction of Nature.

Welcome to the Jungle.

So You Say It’s "Natural"?

Environmental Discourse.

The Limits of Constructivism: Science, Relativism, and the Very Material World.

Thinking with Construction.

Part II Objects of Concern.

9 Carbon Dioxide.

Stuck in Pittsburgh Traffic.

A Short History of CO2.

Institutions: Climate Free-Riders and Carbon Cooperation.

Markets: Trading More Gases, Buying Less Carbon.

Political Economy: Who Killed the Atmosphere?

The Carbon Puzzle.

10 Trees.

Chained to a Tree in Berkeley California.

A Short History of Trees.

Population and Markets: The Forest Transition Theory.

Political Economy: Accumulation and Deforestation.

Ethics, Justice, and Equity: Should Trees Have Standing?

The Tree Puzzle.

11 Wolves.

January 12, 1995, Yellowstone National Park.

A Short History of Wolves.

Ethics: Rewilding the Northeast.

Institutions: Stakeholder Management.

Social Construction: Of Wolves and Men Masculinity.

The Wolf Puzzle.

12 Tuna.

Blood Tuna.

A Short History of Tuna.

Markets and Commodities: Eco-Labels to the Rescue?.

Political Economy: Re-regulating Fishery Economies.

Ethics and Ecocentrism: The Social Construction of Charismatic Species.

The Tuna Puzzle.

13 Bottled Water.

A Tale of Two Bottles.

A Short History of Bottled Water.

Population: Bottling for Scarcity?

Risk: Health and Safety in a Bottle?

Political Economy: Manufacturing Demand on an Enclosed Commons.

The Bottled Water Puzzle.

14 French Fries.

MMM-MMM Good.

A Short History of the Fry.

Risk Analysis: Eating What We Choose and Choosing What We Eat.

Political Economy: Eat Fries or Else!

Ethics: Protecting or Engineering Potato Heritage?

The French Fry Puzzle.

Glossary.

References.

Index.

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