umu.sePublications
Change search
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf
On the critique of “The environmental ethical project”: Why this critique has failed
Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies. (USSTE)
2010 (English)In: The Philosophy of the Environment - Programme and Abstracts, 2010, 117-118 p.Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Ever since environmental ethics began to emerge as an academic discipline in the early 70’s, critical voices have been raised against what by many has been considered its project, namely to establish the direct moral importance of some non-human, non-sentient, non-conscious natural entities. We can distinguish between two main lines of this critique; one that is practical, or pragmatic (claiming that there are pragmatic reasons – given certain practical, “environmentalist”, goals – to avoid this project), and one that is theoretical. Here I am interested in the latter, theoretical, critique. This critique has appeared in many different forms, but all versions that I know of suffer from one of three flaws: (1) They apply only to some versions (not the most plausible ones) of the environmental ethical project (or they do not apply to any actual version of it); (2) they are not critiques against this project specifically, but against any normative ethical view (i.e. any view according to which there are moral reasons to do (or refrain from doing) this or that); (3) they simply beg the question against those who defend some version of this project. Among the critiques that suffer from (1) we find, e.g., allegations of misanthropy and “ecofascism” (or more generally, various critiques according to which the environmental ethical project has unacceptable normative implications). Among those that suffer from (2) we find, e.g., the critiques according to which the very notion of intrinsic value is untenable and ought to be abandoned. And among those that suffer from (3) we find, e.g., the critique according to which the central notion of moral importance is not intrinsic value, but moral standing (which is supposed to pertain only to sentient creatures). I will give some examples of critiques that suffer from (1) and (2), and explain why they do so, but I will focus on the critiques that suffer from (3). Doing so will reveal what a critique of the environmental ethical project that escapes (1), (2) and (3) would have to show, and what implications it would have. My conclusion is that it is very doubtful that a successful critique of this project can be formulated, and that each environmental ethical theory, therefore, should be judged on its own merits.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2010. 117-118 p.
Keyword [en]
Environmental ethics
National Category
Philosophy Ethics
Research subject
Practical Philosophy; Ethics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-37575OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-37575DiVA: diva2:367944
Conference
22nd International Conference of Philosophy: The Philosophy of the Environment, Kalamata, Greece, July 2010
Available from: 2010-11-09 Created: 2010-11-09 Last updated: 2014-01-21Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

No full text

Search in DiVA

By author/editor
Samuelsson, Lars
By organisation
Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies
PhilosophyEthics

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar

urn-nbn

Altmetric score

urn-nbn
Total: 134 hits
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf