Ecologies of the Heart

Author: E. N. Anderson
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 9780195358186
Format: PDF, Docs
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There is much we can learn about conservation from native peoples, says Gene Anderson. While the advanced nations of the West have failed to control overfishing, deforestation, soil erosion, pollution, and a host of other environmental problems, many traditional peoples manage their natural resources quite successfully. And if some traditional peoples mismanage the environment--the irrational value some place on rhino horn, for instance, has left this species endangered--the fact remains that most have found ways to introduce sound ecological management into their daily lives. Why have they succeeded while we have failed? In Ecologies of the Heart, Gene Anderson reveals how religion and other folk beliefs help pre-industrial peoples control and protect their resources. Equally important, he offers much insight into why our own environmental policies have failed and what we can do to better manage our resources. A cultural ecologist, Gene Anderson has spent his life exploring the ways in which different groups of people manage the environment, and he has lived for years in fishing communities in Hong Kong, Malaysia, Singapore, Tahiti, and British Columbia--as well as in a Mayan farmtown in south Mexico--where he has studied fisheries, farming, and forest management. He has concluded that all traditional societies that have managed resources well over time have done so in part through religion--by the use of emotionally powerful cultural symbols that reinforce particular resource management strategies. Moreover, he argues that these religious beliefs, while seeming unscientific, if not irrational, at first glance, are actually based on long observation of nature. To illustrate this insight, he includes many fascinating portraits of native life. He offers, for instance, an intriguing discussion of the Chinese belief system known as Feng-Shui (wind and water) and tells of meeting villagers in remote areas of Hong Kong's New Territories who assert that dragons live in the mountains, and that to disturb them by cutting too sharply into the rock surface would cause floods and landslides (which in fact it does). He describes the Tlingit Indians of the Pacific Northwest, who, before they strip bark from the great cedar trees, make elaborate apologies to spirits they believe live inside the trees, assuring the spirits that they take only what is necessary. And we read of the Maya of southern Mexico, who speak of the lords of the Forest and the Animals, who punish those who take more from the land or the rivers than they need. These beliefs work in part because they are based on long observation of nature, but also, and equally important, because they are incorporated into a larger cosmology, so that people have a strong emotional investment in them. And conversely, Anderson argues that our environmental programs often fail because we have not found a way to engage our emotions in conservation practices. Folk beliefs are often dismissed as irrational superstitions. Yet as Anderson shows, these beliefs do more to protect the environment than modern science does in the West. Full of insights, Ecologies of the Heart mixes anthropology with ecology and psychology, traditional myth and folklore with informed discussions of conservation efforts in industrial society, to reveal a strikingly new approach to our current environmental crises.

Ecology and the Sacred

Author: Roy A. Rappaport
Publisher: University of Michigan Press
ISBN: 9780472111701
Format: PDF, Kindle
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A meaningful homage to an extraordinary anthropologist

Nature and Culture

Author: Sarah Pilgrim
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1136532005
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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There is a growing recognition that the diversity of life comprises both biological and cultural diversity. But this division is not universal and, in many cases, has been deepened by the common disciplinary divide between the natural and social sciences and our apparent need to manage and control nature. This book goes beyond divisive definitions and investigates the bridges linking biological and cultural diversity. The international team of authors explore the common drivers of loss, and argue that policy responses should target both forms of diversity in a novel integrative approach to conservation, thus reducing the gap between science, policy and practice. While conserving nature alongside human cultures presents unique challenges, this book forcefully shows that any hope for saving biological diversity is predicated on a concomitant effort to appreciate and protect cultural diversity.

Anthropology and Religion

Author: Robert L. Winzeler
Publisher: Rowman Altamira
ISBN: 9780759110465
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Drawing from ethnographic examples found throughout the world, this text covers what anthropologists know or think about religion, how they have studied it, and how they interpret or explain it. A key text for students of upper division courses in the anthropological study of religion.

Caring for Place

Author: E N Anderson
Publisher: Left Coast Press
ISBN: 1611329590
Format: PDF, Mobi
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Marshalling decades of research on cultures across several continents, E. N. Anderson, a leading writer and scholar in human ecology and anthropology, shows how practicing environmental sustainability depends primarily on social and emotional engagements.

Everyone Eats

Author: E. N. Anderson
Publisher: NYU Press
ISBN: 0814789161
Format: PDF, Mobi
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Everyone eats, but rarely do we investigate why we eat what we eat. Why do we love spices, sweets, coffee? How did rice become such a staple food throughout so much of eastern Asia? Everyone Eats examines the social and cultural reasons for our food choices and provides an explanation of the nutritional reasons for why humans eat what they do, resulting in a unique cultural and biological approach to the topic. E. N. Anderson explains the economics of food in the globalization era; food’s relationship to religion, medicine, and ethnicity; and offers suggestions on how to end hunger, starvation, and malnutrition. This thoroughly updated Second Edition incorporates the latest food scholarship, most notably recognizing the impact of sustainable eating advocacy and the state of food security in the world today. Anderson also brings more insight than ever before into the historical and scientific underpinnings of our food customs, fleshing this out with fifteen new and original photographs from his own extensive fieldwork. A perennial classic in the anthropology of food, Everyone Eats feeds our need to understand human ecology by explaining the ways that cultures and political systems structure the edible environment.

Daoism and Ecology

Author: N. J. Girardot
Publisher: Harvard Univ Ctr for the
ISBN:
Format: PDF
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The authors in this volume consider the intersection of Daoism and ecology, looking at the theoretical and historical implications associated with a Daoist approach to the environment. They also analyze perspectives found in Daoist religious texts and within the larger Chinese cultural context in order to delineate key issues found in the classical texts.

Ideology social theory and the environment

Author: William D. Sunderlin
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers
ISBN:
Format: PDF, Mobi
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This book shows that polemical environmental and ecological debates are governed not so much by access to facts as they are by the political ideology of the expert advancing a particular argument. Moreover, the thoughts of these experts tend to be based largely in just one of three competing streams of political thought: the left, the center, or the right. Drawing on social theory, the author explains the philosophical origins of this tendency to rely on just one of three traditions, and why this poses a serious obstacle to conceptualizing the cause, nature, and resolution of environmental problems.

Positive Ecology

Author: Gerald Schmidt
Publisher: Ashgate Publishing, Ltd.
ISBN: 9780754646020
Format: PDF, Docs
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While newspapers and other popular media tend to focus on the negative aspects of environmental change, this volume examines the alternative notion of 'positive ecology'. It provides an original and previously undervalued approach to sustainability, and suggests that work towards sustainability is not only a necessity for our children's future, but necessary, sensible and meaningful in the present.