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Profile: Martin Drenthen (Radboud University Nijmegen)
  1. Martin Drenthen (2005). Wildness as Critical Border Concept; Nietzsche and the Debate on Wilderness Restoration. Environmental Values 14 (3):317-337.
    How can environmental philosophy benefit from Friedrich Nietzsche's radical critique of morality? In this paper, it is argued that Nietzsche's account of nature provides us with a challenging diagnosis of the modern crisis in our relationship with nature. Moreover, his interpretation of wildness can elucidate our concern with the value of wilderness as a place of value beyond the sphere of human intervention. For Nietzsche, wild nature is a realm where moral valuations are out of order. In his work, however, (...)
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  2. Martin Drenthen (2009). Fatal Attraction. Environmental Ethics 31 (3):297-315.
    The concept of wildness not only plays a role in philosophical debates, but also in popular culture. Wild nature is often seen as a place outside the cultural sphere where one can still encounter instances of transcendence. Some writers and moviemakers contest the dominant romanticized view of wild nature by telling stories that somehow show a different harsher face of nature. In encounters with the wild and unruly, humans can sometimes experience the misfit between their well-ordered, human-centered, self-created world view (...)
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  3. Martin Drenthen (2009). Fatal Attraction. Wildnes in Contemporary Film. Environmental Ethics 31 (3):297-315.
    The concept of wildness not only plays a role in philosophical debates, but also in popular culture. Wild nature is often seen as a place outside the cultural sphere where one can still encounter instances of transcendence. Some writers and moviemakers contest the dominant romanticized view of wild nature by telling stories that somehow show a different harsher face of nature. In encounters with the wild and unruly, humans can sometimes experience the misfit between their well-ordered, human-centered, self-created world view (...)
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  4.  8
    Martin Drenthen (2016). The Return of the Wild in the Anthropocene. Wolf Resurgence in the Netherlands. Ethics, Policy and Environment 18 (3):318-337.
    In most rewilding projects, humans are still the agents in control: it is us who decide to no longer want to fully control nature. Spontaneous rewilding changes the nature of this game. Once we are confronted with species that have their own agency, that cannot fully be controlled, and that behave in ways that we do not always like, then it proves hard to co-exist and tolerate nature’s autonomy. Nowhere is this more clearly visible than with the resurging wolf, whose (...)
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  5.  22
    Martin Drenthen (1996). Het zwijgen van de natuur. Filosofie En Praktijk 17:187-199.
    Een respectvolle houding ten opzichte van de natuur houdt noodzakelijkerwijs ook een zekere distantie in. -/- ('The silence of nature') If we pretent to speak with nature's voice or in on nature's behalf we risk ventriloguising. A respectful attitude towards nature also requires acknowledging the distance between us and nature, recognize that nature does not speak. But nature's silence does have something to say to us. In this paper, I analyze the debate in Dutch environmental philosophy between moral realism of (...)
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  6.  14
    Martin Drenthen (2010). NIMBY and the Ethics of the Particular. Ethics, Policy and Environment 13 (3):321-323.
    In “Why Not NIMBY?” Derek Turner and Simon Feldman fail to address that many NIMBY protesters are not just concerned with concrete decision making, but also introduce a ‘metaphysical’ issue that liberal-democracy considers an inappropriate subject for the political debate. The type of rationality dominating political discourse requires one to reason in terms of 'common good' or personal preferences that can be weighted against other preferences. NIMBY’s do neither; rather they reframe the debate, starting from a radically different approach to (...)
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  7.  32
    Martin Drenthen (2011). 'Reading Ourselves Through the Land: Landscape Hermeneutics and Ethics of Place'. In Forrest Clingerman Clingerman & Mark Dixon (eds.), 'Reading Ourselves Through the Land: Landscape Hermeneutics and Ethics of Place', In: F. Clingerman & M. Dixon : Placing Nature on the Borders of Religion, Philosophy, and Ethics. Ashgate
    In this text, I discuss the environmental education project "Legible Landscape ", which aims to teach inhabitants to read their landscape and develop a closer, more engaged relationship to place. I show that the project's semiotic perspective on landscape legibility tends to hamper the understanding of the moral dimension of reading landscapes, and argue that a hermeneutical perspective is better suited to acknowledge the way that readers and texts are intimately connected.
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  8.  67
    Martin Drenthen (1999). The Paradox of Environmental Ethics: Nietzsche's View of Nature and the Wild. Environmental Ethics 21 (2):163-175.
    In this paper, I offer a systematic inquiry into the significance of Nietzsche’s philosophy to environmental ethics. Nietzsche’s philosophy of nature is, I believe, relevant today because it makes explicit a fundamental ambiguity that is also characteristic of our current understanding of nature. I show how the current debate between traditional environmental ethics and postmodern environmental philosophycan be interpreted as a symptom of this ambiguity. I argue that, in light of Nietzsche’s critique of morality, environmental ethics is a highly paradoxical (...)
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  9.  3
    Martin Drenthen (2010). NIMBY and the Ethics of the Particular. Ethics, Place and Environment 13 (3):321-323.
    In “Why Not NIMBY?” Derek Turner and Simon Feldman fail to address that many NIMBY protesters are not just concerned with concrete decision making, but also introduce a ‘metaphysical’ issue that liberal-democracy considers an inappropriate subject for the political debate. The type of rationality dominating political discourse requires one to reason in terms of 'common good' or personal preferences that can be weighted against other preferences. NIMBY’s do neither; rather they reframe the debate, starting from a radically different approach to (...)
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  10.  31
    Martin Drenthen (2002). Nietzsche and the Paradox of Environmental Ethics: Nietzsche's View of Nature and Morality. New Nietzsche Studies 5 (1/2):12-25.
    In this paper, I offer a systematic inquiry into the significance of Nietzsche's philosophy to environmental ethics. Nietzsche's philosophy of nature is, I believe, relevant today because it makes explicit a fundamental ambiguity that is also characteristic of our current understanding of nature. I show how the current debate between traditional environmental ethics and postmodern environmental philosophy can be interpreted as a symptom of this ambiguity. I argue that, in light of Nietzsche's critique of morality, environmental ethics is a highly (...)
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  11.  31
    Martin Drenthen (2011). Ecocentrism as Anthropocentrism. Ethics, Policy and Environment 14 (2):151 - 154.
    In 'Respect for Everything', David Schmidt rightfully criticizes species egalitarianism, buts neglects an even more fundamental problem. Ecocentric egalitarianism is not only self defeating, but in fact ultimately entails a morally dubious radical anthropocentrism. Perhaps the morally most troubling aspect of anthropocentrism is not its assumption that humans are superior to non-humans, but that what matters to human beings is true in an absolute sense. Taylor's argument that there are no valid moral reasons to consider humans superior, assumes that it (...)
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  12.  11
    Martin Drenthen (2009). Nietzsche and the Paradox of Environmental Ethics. New Nietzsche Studies 5 (1/2):12-25.
    In this paper, I offer a systematic inquiry into the significance of Nietzsche's philosophy to environmental ethics. Nietzsche's philosophy of nature is, I believe, relevant today because it makes explicit a fundamental ambiguity that is also characteristic of our current understanding of nature. I show how the current debate between traditional environmental ethics and postmodern environmental philosophy can be interpreted as a symptom of this ambiguity. I argue that, in light of Nietzsche's critique of morality, environmental ethics is a highly (...)
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  13.  10
    Martin Drenthen (2009). Ecological Restoration and Place Attachment; Emplacing Nonplace? Environmental Values 18 (3):285-312.
    The creation of new wetlands along rivers as an instrument to mitigate flood risks in times of climate change seduces us to approach the landscape from a 'managerial' perspective and threatens a more place-oriented approach. How to provide ecological restoration with a broad cultural context that can help prevent these new landscapes from becoming non-places, devoid of meaning and with no real connection to our habitable world. In this paper, I discuss three possible alternative interpretations of the meaning of places (...)
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  14.  21
    Mirjam de Groot, Martin Drenthen & Wouter T. de Groot (2011). Public Visions of the Human/Nature Relationship and Their Implications for Environmental Ethics. Environmental Ethics 33 (1):25-44.
    A social scientific survey on visions of human/nature relationships in western Europe shows that the public clearly distinguishes not only between anthropocentrism and ecocentrism, but also between two nonanthropocentric types of thought, which may be called “partnership with nature” and “participation in nature.” In addition, the respondents distinguish a form of human/nature relationship that is allied to traditional stewardship but has a more ecocentric content, labeled here as “guardianship of nature.” Further analysis shows that the general public does not subscribe (...)
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  15.  6
    Martin Drenthen (2013). Landscapes Devoid of Meaning? A Reply to Nicole Note. Environmental Values 23 (1):17-23.
    Even though artists and philosophers sometimes succeed in finding words for the meaning that places can have for us, we can never fully identify the meaning that places have for us. Nicole Note is right in arguing (using the work of Arnold Burms) that the ineffable plays a key role in the meaningful relations we have with the world, and that the experience of meaning can only emerge if there is a real risk that it fails to appear. Therefore, meaning (...)
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  16.  9
    Martin Drenthen (2007). New Wilderness Landscapes as Moral Criticism. Ethical Perspectives 14 (4):371-403.
    In moral debates about human’s relationship with nature, one often hears references to nature’s wildness. Apparently, postmodern city dwellers seem to be deeply fascinated by wild nature; for them, wildness somehow seems to have strong moral significance. How should we interpret this fascination? Moral meanings of nature come into play as soon as we start articulating our relationship with the world.In this process, we transform the neutrality of space into a meaningful place, that is, through interpretation we make mere environment (...)
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  17.  12
    Forrest Clingerman, Brian Treanor, Martin Drenthen & David Utsler (eds.) (2013). Interpreting Nature. Fordham University Press.
    The twentieth century saw the rise of hermeneutics, the philosophical interpretation of texts, and eventually the application of its insights to metaphorical “texts” such as individual and group identities. It also saw the rise of modern environmentalism, which evolved through various stages in which it came to realize that many of its key concerns—“wilderness” and “nature” among them—are contested territory that are viewed differently by different people. Understanding nature requires science and ecology to be sure, but it also requires a (...)
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  18. Martin Drenthen (2009). Ecological Restoration and Place Attachment: Emplacing Non-Places? Environmental Values 18 (3):285-312.
    The creation of new wetlands along rivers as an instrument to mitigate flood risks in times of climate change seduces us to approach the landscape from a 'managerial' perspective and threatens a more place-oriented approach. How to provide ecological restoration with a broad cultural context that can help prevent these new landscapes from becoming nonplaces, devoid of meaning and with no real connection to our habitable world. In this paper, I discuss three possible alternative interpretations of the meaning of places (...)
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  19.  1
    Martinus Antonius Maria Drenthen, Jozef Keulartz & James D. Proctor (eds.) (2009). New Visions of Nature: Complexity and Authenticity. Springer.
    The contributions to this volume explore perceptual and conceptual boundaries between the human and the natural, or between an 'out there' and 'in here.
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  20. Martin Drenthen (2005). Wildness as a Critical Border Concept: Nietzsche and the Debate on Wilderness Restoration. Environmental Values 14 (3):317-337.
    How can environmental philosophy benefit from Friedrich Nietzscheʼs radical critique of morality? In this paper, it is argued that Nietzscheʼs account of nature provides us with a challenging diagnosis of the modern crisis in our relationship with nature. Moreover, his interpretation of wildness can elucidate our concern with the value of wilderness as a place of value beyond the sphere of human intervention. For Nietzsche, wild nature is a realm where moral valuations are out of order. In his work, however, (...)
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  21. Martin Drenthen (2009). Ecological Restoration and Place Attachment; Emplacing Nonplace? Environmental Values 18 (3):285-312.
    The creation of new wetlands along rivers as an instrument to mitigate flood risks in times of climate change seduces us to approach the landscape from a 'managerial' perspective and threatens a more place -oriented approach. How to provide ecological restoration with a broad cultural context that can help prevent these new landscapes from becoming non-places, devoid of meaning and with no real connection to our habitable world. In this paper, I discuss three possible alternative interpretations of the meaning of (...)
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  22. Martin Drenthen (2009). Ecological Restoration and Place Attachment; Emplacing Nonplace? Environmental Values 18 (3):285-312.
    The creation of new wetlands along rivers as an instrument to mitigate flood risks in times of climate change seduces us to approach the landscape from a 'managerial' perspective and threatens a more place -oriented approach. How to provide ecological restoration with a broad cultural context that can help prevent these new landscapes from becoming non-places, devoid of meaning and with no real connection to our habitable world. In this paper, I discuss three possible alternative interpretations of the meaning of (...)
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  23. Martin Drenthen (2009). Ecological Restoration and Place Attachment; Emplacing Nonplace? Environmental Values 18 (3):285-312.
    The creation of new wetlands along rivers as an instrument to mitigate flood risks in times of climate change seduces us to approach the landscape from a 'managerial' perspective and threatens a more place -oriented approach. How to provide ecological restoration with a broad cultural context that can help prevent these new landscapes from becoming non-places, devoid of meaning and with no real connection to our habitable world. In this paper, I discuss three possible alternative interpretations of the meaning of (...)
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