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Dialogue and Universalism

Volume 20, Issue 11/12, 2010

Environmental Ethics: Questions for the Future

Alan Holland
Pages 9-20

Agriculture
the “Cinderella” of Environmental Ethics

Since agriculture constitutes what is probably humankind’s most extensive and prolonged engagement with the natural world, the scant attention paid to it in much of the environmental ethics literature represents something of a paradox. This paper is an attempt to address that paradox. First we offer some explanations for this neglect, tracing it to some key features of environmental ethics as it is currently practised. Then we identify some hopeful signs that things are changing in a direction that is more conducive to the inclusion of the issues raised by agriculture. Finally we offer a synthesis of these hopeful signs, incorporating a suggestion as to what it is that they all have in common.

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