Interpretivism, postmodernism and nature: Ecological conversations

Philosophy and Social Criticism 37 (7):795-821 (2011)
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Abstract

This article uses the interpretive work of Dreyfus, Gadamer, Nussbaum and Taylor to explore the natural environment as a shared ecological and social commonality. I focus on the supposition that the natural world possesses intrinsic value and new political structures are needed. I explore how we might better engage with multiple cultures concerning matters at the heart of ecological politics. Political interpretivists offer processes of equal facilitation and maximization that work to include environmental values in democratic thought. Interpretivists differ from earth-based and neo-conservative environmentalists, who dominate modern debates. The differences involve understanding the role of practical reasoning and how humanity interacts with the natural world. Intriguingly, then, interpretivists concur with Deep Ecologists that nature possesses intrinsic value, but do so guided by an ideal of authenticity.

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