Volume 19, Issue 4, Winter 1997
Against the Enclosure of the Ethical Commons
Radical Environmentalism as an “Ethics of Place”
Inspired by recent anti-roads protests in Britain, I attempt to articulate a radical environmental ethos and, at the same time, to produce a cogent moral analysis of the dialectic between environmental destruction and protection. In this analysis, voiced in terms of a spatial metaphoric, an “ethics of place,” I seek to subvert the hegemony of modernity’s formal systematization and codification of values while
still conserving something of modernity’s critical heritage: to reconstitute ethics in order to counter the current enclosure of the moral field within economistic and legal bureaucratic frameworks and institutions.