Bioregionalism and Global Ethics
A Transactional Approach to Achieving Ecological Sustainability, Social Justice, and Human Well-being
Routledge – 2011 – 286 pages
Series: Studies in Philosophy
Bioregionalism and Global Ethics suggests that current trends towards globalization are creating entirely new social and environmental problems which require cross-cultural dialogue towards the creation of a new "global ethic." Current models of development are based on an implicit global ethic which advocates bringing everyone in the world up to the same standards of living as those prevalent in the so-called "developed" countries through unlimited economic growth. Evanoff argues that this goal is not only unattainable but also undesirable because it ultimately undermines the ability of the environment to sustain both human and non-human flourishing, exacerbates rather than overcomes social inequalities both within and between cultures, and fails to achieve genuine human well-being for all but a wealthy minority. An alternative bioregional global ethic is proposed which seeks to maximize ecological sustainability, social justice, and human well-being through the creation of economically self-sufficient and politically decentralized communities delinked from the global market but confederated at appropriate levels to address problems that transcend cultural borders. Such an ethic is based on a transactional view of the relationship between self, society, and nature, which attempts to create more symbiotic and less conflictual modes of interaction between human cultures and natural environments, while promoting the flourishing of both. Instead of a single monolithic global ethic, bioregionalism suggests that there should be sufficient convergence between cultures to allow for the successful resolution of mutual problems, but also sufficient divergence to enable the continued evolution of both biological and cultural diversity on a global scale.
"Evanoff ’s extensive coverage of the philosophical, economic, sociological, and anthropological aspects of the debates on environmental ethics provides a helpful update or introduction for readers whose studies are normally more focused on literary concerns. With its clearly defined chapter topics and logical development, the book is also a valuable teaching resource." – Interdisciplinary Studies in Literature and Environmental Studies, Bruce Allen, Seisen University, Japan
List of Figures Acknowledgments Introduction and Overview of the Book Part I: A Bioregional Perspective on Global Ethics 1: Bioregionalism and the Dominant Development Paradigm 2: Cross-Cultural Dialogue on a Global Ethic Part II: A Transactional Framework for Bioregional Ethics 3: Transactionalism and Bioregional Ethics 4: The Coevolution of Nature and Society 5: The Social Construction of Nature Part III: Harmonizing Self, Society, And Nature 6: Beyond Anthropocentrism and Ecocentrism 7: Communicative Ethics and Moral Considerability 8: Cross-Cultural Dialogue on a Land Ethic Part IV: A Bioregional Paradigm for Global Ethics 9: Bioregionalism and Ecological Sustainability 10: Bioregionalism and Social Justice 11: Bioregionalism and Human Well-Being Part V: Bioregionalism in a Global Context 12: Preserving Biocultural Diversity 13: Bringing the Economy Home 14: Acting Locally, Interacting Globally Part VI: Globalism in its Place 15: Global Ethics Revisited 16: Transitions to a Bioregional "World Order" Bibliography Index
Richard Evanoff teaches International Communication and Environmental Ethics at Aoyama Gakuin University in Tokyo, Japan. He holds a Ph.D. from the Institute for Environment, Philosophy, and Public Policy at Lancaster University in the UK.