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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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My Place in the Sun

My Place in the Sun

(p.281) Chapter 14 My Place in the Sun
Interpreting Nature

David Wood

Fordham University Press

This essay distinguishes space from place, pursuing the thought that it is via temporality, especially history, that place is distinct from space. If the hermeneutics of place begins with one’s body, where does it end? Is one’s “place in the sun” one’s existential right to exist, or does it extend, perhaps in a Lockean fashion, to property and possession in which labour and meaning are mixed? The meaning of place is in part a narrative construction. Places have histories, contested histories, and they contain their past in a way that anticipates the future. This claim survives our moving away from a naïve naturalistic understanding of the past to one constructed and constituted so as to include narrative, intentions, and projections even when these form the basis for serious contestation of what we take to be the past.

Keywords:   Space, Place, History, Locke, Narrative, Environmental philosophy

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