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Environmental Ethics

Volume 40, Issue 1, Spring 2018
Chinese Environmental Philosophy

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1. Environmental Ethics: Volume > 40 > Issue: 1
From the Editor: This and That
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2. Environmental Ethics: Volume > 40 > Issue: 1
Doug Anderson From the Guest Editor: Environmental Thought in China
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3. Environmental Ethics: Volume > 40 > Issue: 1
Li Yingjie, Wang Qian The Intellectual Features and Cultural Backgrounds of Modern Environmental Ethics in China
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The perception of modern environmental ethics in China has been greatly influenced by two factors: scholarship of environmental ethics in Europe and the United States on the one hand, and ideological resources from traditional Chinese culture on the other. In practice, while Chinese governmental agencies, enterprises, and social organizations are paying more and more attention to the perspective of environmental ethics in technology assessment and social governance, they are still faced with the challenge of a large number of realistic problems. Behind these intellectual features, there is the potential impact of cultural back­grounds, including traditional views of nature, epistemology, methodology, and axiology in China. Modern environmental ethics in China is growing into a kind of environmental ethics with the characteristics of the philosophy of organism, which can meet the requirements of sustainable development and responsible innovation, so that it may play its unique role in the era of globalization.
4. Environmental Ethics: Volume > 40 > Issue: 1
Liu Yongmou, Wang Hao Zhuangzi’s Ecological Politics: An Integration of Humanity, Nature, and Power
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There is a problematic dichotomy of nature/power in Western ecological politics. In this article, we try to argue for a new type of ecological politics, based on Chinese Taoism, especially the idea of Zhuangzi, that can integrate humanity, nature, and power. Zhuangzi’s idea of “play with nature” constitutes a new kind of play-style view of nature. This view not only emphasizes the freedom and pleasure in everyday human practices with nature, but also proposes a way to deconstruct the rigid authority, symbolism, and ideology surrounding these practices. It thereby opens up an ecological politics with a play-style position, which can break down the mind’s fixations that are disciplined by power, of encountering situations as they emerge, and living with nature in a sincere and joyful manner.
5. Environmental Ethics: Volume > 40 > Issue: 1
Wang Xiaowei Confucian Cosmological Life and its Eco-Philosophical Implications
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This article discusses a Confucian notion of cosmological life and its eco-philosophical implication. In contrast to the Kantian notion of the man who has exclusive moral worth, existing as the ultimate value-conferrer among beings, Confucian cosmological man understands his/her selfness through the lens of sacred unity with other beings. The modern ecological disaster is arguably caused by the reluctance to recognize the inherent value of nature, which is due to the anthropocentrism partly introduced by the enlightenment notion of humanity. The Confucian cosmological person worships the ultimate value of the cosmos as a unity of heaven, humans, and earth, and in so doing delivers genuine care for the environment, not for the sake of its instrumental but for its inherent value.
6. Environmental Ethics: Volume > 40 > Issue: 1
Song Tian Why Does a Human, a Mammal, Have to Drink Milk of a Cow, Another Mammal?
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Why Chinese culture has turned to the use of cow’s milk needs to be reexamined. The reason given to the Chinese people is that the drinking of milk is scientifically supported. However, the actual drinking of cow’s milk has been and continues to be problematic for Chinese people since many have lactose intolerance. This problem leads to the larger question of why one might trust science for the answer all issues, especially when science is often working for corporate interests and not merely for truth.
7. Environmental Ethics: Volume > 40 > Issue: 1
Gao Shan From Intrinsic Value to the Emotion of Wonder: The Paradigm Shift in the Construction of Chinese Environmental Ethics
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Since environmental ethics research started in China in the 1980s, it has been deeply influenced by environmental ethics theory in the United States. Some Chinese environmental philosophers have adopted the key concept of intrinsic value to construct Chinese environmental ethics. However, in recent decades, the concept of intrinsic value has been criticized by scholars in both the United States and China. Many Chinese have found that environmental ethics in the United States that is founded on the concept of intrinsic value is incompatible with Chinese philosophy and culture. They have begun a new effort that is aimed at developing a localized environmental ethics based on traditional Chinese philosophy. However, the Chinese scholars’ theoretical effort neglects the important concept of wilderness that is emerging from preservation and conservation practices in China. In this context, the emotion of wonder and its interrelationship with intrinsic value is the new paradigm for constructing a Chinese environmental ethics.
book reviews
8. Environmental Ethics: Volume > 40 > Issue: 1
Eric Katz Autonomous Nature: Problems of Prediction and Control from Ancient Times to the Scientific Revolution
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9. Environmental Ethics: Volume > 40 > Issue: 1
Per Sandin Plant Ethics: Concepts and Applications
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