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Philosophy Gone Wild / Edition 1

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Overview

"Nature is perhaps the most ancient philosophical category, yet few others are of greater current relevance. Still, a quarter century back, not even the most astute observer would have predicted a wild turn in philosophy. There has been no more surprising philosophical development than the recent, serious reconsideration of the human relationship to the ecosystemic Earth. The questions come in many forms: Have we any duties to natural things at all, or merely duties to persons concerning natural things? What sort of human dominion over nature is proper? In what senses can or should humans follow nature? Have we duties to animals, perhaps at least to sentient animals? Have we duties to endangered species, or, again, only duties to persons concerning rare species?

"Is nature only a resource for human needs, natural things accordingly having merely instrumental value? Or are there intrinsic values in ecosystems, apart from human concerns? Are these to be located in organic individuals or in their biological communities, the whole of which the organism is a part? Are the values associated with nature subjective or objective? Precisely what are these values carried by natural things? How are they to be traded off against other human values, against the legitimate and not-so-legitimate demands of industry, business, development? How much nature do we destroy in order to benefit the poor? How much nature do we owe to future generations? How does the present debate about valuing nature reconnect with longstanding issues within philosophy such as the (so-called) naturalistic fallacy, that of moving from an is, describing nature, to an ought, prescribing an ethic? How does it relate to the Darwinian portrait of nature red in tooth and claw? What, after all, is the nature of nature, and what experiences encountering nature are appropriate in the light on contemporary bioscience and of philosophical criticism? These essays discuss the environmental turn in philosophy."

Powerful essays which focus on ethics and nature, values in nature, environmental philosophy in practice, and nature in experience.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780879755560
  • Publisher: Prometheus Books
  • Publication date: 8/1/1989
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 269
  • Lexile: 1290L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.34 (h) x 0.59 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface 9
I Ethics and Nature 11
1 Is There an Ecological Ethic? 12
2 Can and Ought We to Follow Nature? 30
3 Philosophical Aspects of the Environment 53
4 The River of Life: Past, Present, and Future 61
II Values in Nature 73
5 Values in Nature 74
6 Are Values in Nature Subjective or Objective? 91
7 Values Gone Wild 118
III Environmental Philosophy in Practice 143
8 Just Environmental Business 144
9 Valuing Wildlands 180
10 Duties to Endangered Species 206
IV Nature in Experience 221
11 Lake Solitude: The Individual in Wildness 223
12 Meditation at the Precambrian Contact 233
13 Farewell, Washington County 241
14 Nature and Human Emotions 248
15 The Pasqueflower 256
Index 263
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