This work represents Murray Bookchin's riposte to the antihumanism, mysticism and antirationalism which are influencing many people's attitudes to environmental problems. Bookchin offers a critique of, among others, social Darwinists, deep ecologists, new agers, technophobes, Foucault, Derrida and Baudrillard.
The volume documents, and makes an original contribution to, an astonishing period in twentieth-century philosophy—the progress of Arne Naess's ecophilosophy from its inception to the present. It includes Naess's most crucial polemics with leading thinkers, drawn from sources as diverse as scholarly articles, correspondence, TV interviews and unpublished exchanges. The book testifies to the skeptical and self-correcting aspects of Naess's vision, which has deepened and broadened to include third world and feminist perspectives. Philosophical Dialogues is an essential addition to the (...) literature on environmental philosophy. (shrink)
Robyn Eckersley claims erroneously that I believe humanity is currently equipped to take over the “helm” of natural evolution. In addition, she provides a misleading treatment of my discussion of the relationship of first nature and second nature. I argue that her positivistic methodology is inappropriate in dealing with my processual approach and that her Manichaean contrast between biocentrism and anthropocentrism virtually excludes any human intervention in the natural world. With regard to Warwick Fox’s treatment of my writings, I argue (...) that he deals with my views on society’s relationship to nature in a simplistic, narrowly deterministic, and ahistorical manner. I fault both of my deep ecology critics for little or no knowledge of my writings. I conclude with an outline of a dialectical naturalism that treats nature as an evolutionary process-not simply as a scenic view-and places human and sodal evolution in a graded relationship with natural evolution. I emphasize that society and humanity can no longer be separated from natural evolution and that the kind of society we achieve will either foster the development of first nature or damage the planet beyond repair. (shrink)
The failure of socialism, particularly its Marxian variety, to provide a revolutionary alternative has been followed by a highly abstract form of socialist theory that stands sharply at odds with a practical revolutionary project. Its retreat from the factory to the academy—an astonishing phenomenon that cannot be justified by viewing “knowledge” as a technical force in society—has denied socialism the right to a decent burial by perpetuating it as a professional ideology. To the extent that the academy itself has become (...) increasingly disengaged from society, it has used socialist theory to indulge its worst habits. The remains of a once-insurgent movement have provided the intellectual nutrients for conceptual frameworks utterly alien to it—a level of discourse, a range of perceptions, a terminology, and a body of pretensions that mutually reinforce the reduction of ideology to socialism and of socialism to ideology. (shrink)
All the old crap of the thirties is coming back again--the shit about the "class line," the "role of the working class," the "trained cadres," the "vanguard party," and the "proletarian dictatorship." It's all back again, and in a more vulgarized form than ever. The Progressive Labor Party is not the only example, it is merely the worst. One smells the same shit in various offshoots of SDS, and in the Marxist and Socialist clubs on campuses, not to speak of (...) the Trotskyist groups, the International Socialist Clubs and the Youth Against War and Fascism. (shrink)