The call of nature

Social Philosophy and Policy 26 (2):173-192 (2009)
Environmental thinking vacillates between two conceptions of our relationship to nature: one assumes that human beings are simply a part of nature, the other that what is natural is defined by what humans have not interfered with. Both can conduce to making human extinction appear a way to protect the integrity of nature. An alternate view notes that human beings by nature possess speech and reason, or logos, which leads to our ability to articulate a concern for nature. The examples of Deep Ecology and transhumanism suggest that only when nature and logos are completely abstracted from one another will thinking about nature in these terms support advocacy of human extinction. Still, this alternative requires confronting the modern of nature, which can coexist only uneasily with either environmentalism's attempt to get us to value nature more, or transhumanism's effort to have us value it less
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DOI 10.1017/S0265052509090219
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