Environmental Philosophy 3 (1):6-12 (2006)
|Abstract||Whether one’s attention lies with the big wilderness outside or the wild people and places that survive amidst our ecologically impoverished cities and towns, a thorough and rigorous reflection on wildness remains as a task for environmental philosophy. The political and literary movements concerned with the wilderness have sparked passion, insight, and moments of brilliance, but by and large leave us today at best confused, and at worst naïve, with respect to our thinking of wildness. The attempts at philosophical rigor from the ‘fields’ of so-called ‘environmental philosophy’ or ‘environmental ethics’ certainly bring one nofurther toward understanding the experiences of, say, 500 miles of tundra, or the power and push of a river, or the density of a rainforest, or a kiss. Keeping the illumination of direct experience in mind, this paper will attempt a phenomenology of wildness, using the work of 20th century French philosopher Maurice Merleau-Ponty. Merleau-Ponty’s philosophy of chiasm describes a perceptual relationship of intertwining, of intimacy and opacity, between Self and Other, in which the Other’s presence guides one’s own perceptions. Reflection around this chiasmic exchange may help us to understand the peculiar perceptual experience with what we call the wild, and perhaps to understand it as a sort of chiasmic wildness. This chiasmic wildness would not be incarcerated in wilderness areas or wild animals, but would exist in our embodied relationships with other people, animals, plants, and places. This paper is offered as an attempt at reflection, as what Martin Heidegger called a Holzweg: wandering down a path that may lead nowhere, but that must be followed beyond where one stands today|
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Through your library||Configure|
Similar books and articles
Thomas H. Birch (1990). The Incarceration of Wildness: Wilderness Areas as Prisons. Environmental Ethics 12 (1):3-26.
Robert Chapman (2004). Crowded Solitude. Environmental Philosophy 1 (1):58-72.
Martin Drenthen (2009). Fatal Attraction. Wildnes in Contemporary Film. Environmental Ethics 31 (3):297-315.
R. Edward Grumbine (1994). Wildness, Wise Use, and Sustainable Development. Environmental Ethics 16 (3):227-249.
Isis Brook (2008). Wildness in the English Garden Tradition: A Reassessment of the Picturesque From Environmental Philosophy. Ethics and the Environment 13 (1):pp. 105-119.
Kate Booth (2011). In Wilderness and Wildness. Environmental Ethics 33 (3):283-293.
Jim Cheney (1996). The Dusty World: Wildness and Higher Laws in Thoreau's Walden. Ethics and the Environment 1 (2):75 - 90.
I. I. I. Rolston (1983). Values Gone Wild. Inquiry 26 (2):181 – 207.
Bryan E. Bannon (2012). Flesh and Nature: Understanding Merleau-Pontys Relational Ontology. Research in Phenomenology 41 (3):327-357.
Kenneth H. Simonsen (1981). The Value of Wildness. Environmental Ethics 3 (3):259-263.
Eileen O'Rourke (2000). The Reintroduction and Reinterpretation of the Wild. Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 13 (1):144-165.
Mark A. Michael (2002). Why Not Interfere with Nature? Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 5 (1):89-112.
Jack Reynolds (2004). Possible and Impossible, Self and Other, and the Reversibility of Merleau-Ponty and Derrida. Philosophy Today 48 (1):35-49.
Eric Katz (1992). The Call of the Wild: The Struggle Against Domination and the Technological Fix of Nature. Environmental Ethics 14 (3):265-273.
Sorry, there are not enough data points to plot this chart.
Added to index2011-01-09
Total downloads1 ( #274,507 of 548,973 )
Recent downloads (6 months)1 ( #63,511 of 548,973 )
How can I increase my downloads?