Liberation Ecology: Development, Sustainability, and environment in an age of market triumphism
1. The authors also mentions that political ecology does not contain much in terms of actual politics in it, and therefore, it doesn’t seem to have many large-scale solutions. Do you think that this is strength or a weakness of the field?
It’s a weakness in that context could be gained from understanding the broken system; how it attempts to function, and why, so that past mistakes can be memorialized in society as lessons learned.
It’s also a strength, because it encourages more outside-the-box thinking in forming solutions to large-scale problems.
I think that specialists who are fluent in policies and politics should work together with those more passionate about the ecological end of the equation, to learn from each other and strike a balance, through discourse, on how to solve large-scale problems.
Chapter one of Liberation Ecologies, edited by Richard Peet and Michael Watts, begins by discussing the history and philosophy of political ecology and makes apparent the role of discourse, especially the western discourse of development, in our world. The authors agree that, “no discussion of ‘environment’ or ‘development’ can begin without interrogating the meanings of these key words and the various discourses and practices in which they are situated” (p. xi); they stress that the reformation of political ecology focuses on large-scale examination and cross-references with information from several fields of academia. The topic of environmental degradation is at center stage due to the current severe level of ecological destruction and environmentalism (truly a global issue) cannot be separated from politics or economics. The authors argue that western discursive regimes fuel poverty and environmental destruction. They state that in order for the environment to be protected, it is imperative that…
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