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Interpreting NatureThe Emerging Field of Environmental Hermeneutics$
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Forrest Clingerman, Brian Treanor, Martin Drenthen, and David Utsler

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780823254255

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: May 2014

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823254255.001.0001

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New Nature Narratives

New Nature Narratives

Landscape Hermeneutics and Environmental Ethics

Chapter:
(p.225) Chapter 11 New Nature Narratives
Source:
Interpreting Nature
Author(s):

Martin Drenthen

Publisher:
Fordham University Press
DOI:10.5422/fordham/9780823254255.003.0012

In this essay, the author provides building blocks for a reconciliation of the ethical care for heritage protection and nature restoration ethics. It introduces a hermeneutic landscape philosophy that takes landscapes as palimpsests, multi-layered “texts” in need of interpretation, and place identities as built upon certain readings of the landscape. From a hermeneutical perspective, both approaches appear to complement each other: renaturing presents a valuable correction to the anthropocentrism of many European rural cultures, whereas heritage protectionists rightly point to the value of narratives for Old World identities. The author concludes with a short reflection on how such a hermeneutical environmental ethic can be helpful in dealing with environmental conflicts.

Keywords:   narrative, environmental ethics, ecological restoration, landscape heritage, legible landscapes, palimpsest, rewilding, philosophical hermeneutics

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