Politics of the Environment

  1. Cassandra
    Anyone who utters unheeded prophecies of doom'...a daughter of Pram whose prophecies were fated by Apollo to be true but never believed....in environmental matters, often biologists who look at every new mouth as a new strain on the earth's finite carrying capacity
  2. Pollyanna
    A fictional character with unbounded optimism who succeeds in spreading joy and light everywhere she goes...in environmental matters, often economists who see every new human being as a resource necessary for expansion, growth and progress…A person regarded as being foolishly or blindly optimistic
  3. Matriarchy
    A system of kinship relations whereby authority tends to be vested in mothers than in fathers and in which some or all of those rights and powers traditionally associated with the 'head' of the family belong to the mother
  4. Matrilinear
    Matriarchal societies existed in Africa. The salient feature is that the bloodline of descent travels through the female lineage. All property is kept in common on the female side of the family. The father of his own children does not have sole authority over his own children. The mother's brother has final control over important matters concerning the children. All of this made for a much stronger family unit.
  5. Matrofocal
    The term matrifocal, or its synonym, matricentric, simply means mother or female centered and can be understood to designate a domestic form in which only a mother and her dependent children are present or significant. Adult males in the capacity of husbands and fathers or of brothers and mothers brothers are either absent or, in some formulations, present but marginal to family life.
  6. Ecological feminism
    Is the name given to a variety of positions that have roots in different feminist practices and philosophies. These different perspectives reflect not only different feminist perspectives (e.g., liberal, traditional Marxist, radical, socialist, black and Third World), they also reflect different understandings of the nature of and solution to pressing environmental problems.
  7. Sustainable Development
    Development which meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.
  8. Politics
    The activity of reconciling conflicts and gathering support that makes government possible.
  9. Carrying capacity
    The maximum number of organisms that can use a given area of habitat without degrading it and without causing social stresses that cause species to die or to die out.
  10. Liberalism
    The dominant political idea in North America which is based on equality of opportunity, limited government, the consent of the governed and the right of private property. Liberals disagree on the extent to which equality extends to distribution issues.
  11. Policy
    Anything government decides to do or not to do; a broad framework of ideas and values adopted by government in relation to an issue or problem; defends, provides, promotes the interest of the public.
  12. Policy instruments
    The choice of symbolic means, taxation, expenditure, regulation, public enterprise or privatization as the 'tools' or instruments with which policy goals may be achieved.
  13. Market Failure
    Occurs when the market economy is not able to supply a good or service which is in demand and which is considered to be a private good.
  14. Traditional policy decision making
    Relatively closed, collaborative process in which industry and government officials at both levels formulated and implemented policy in relative isolation from public opinion and environmental groups.
  15. North/South Issue:
    An approach to the population problem in which the mostly white, wealthy North is seen attacking the mostly non-white, poor South for problems actually caused by Northern affluence.
  16. Corporatist
    Elite governance characterized by joint decision-making by governments, business, finance and major institutions.
  17. The Age of Reason
    Before the Age of Reason: superstition, corrupt religion, arbitrary rule, uncurbed appetites of the rulers, slaves of experience; John Dunn: "...the unfolding of reason, the cultural passage from superstition to regional comprehension and--its political analogue--the passage from subjection to individual autonomy..." Those who advocated and promoted Reason saw it as liberating the individual and freeing society from irrational decision-making
  18. Reason and Rational Methods
    Reason and rational methods: man the thinker: end-directed action as a rational act; the disposition to favour clear and explicit solutions; belief in progress; belief that in principle all problems have correct answers which implies that doubt cannot be permitted to exist.
  19. The Technocrat as Specialist or Expert:
    A general obsession with mania...solutions, a system in which the logic will always provide support for the conclusions.
  20. Technology
    From the Greek 'techne' meaning art/skill; the theoretical knowledge of industry and the industrial arts; the means by which material things are produced.
  21. Buddhist economics
    The systematic study of how to attain given ends with the minimum means.
  22. Intermediate technology
    Use of technology based on local needs and control; moderate capital investment on a rough ratio of 1:1 of local annual income:capital investment; aimed at economies with labour surpluses.
  23. Work as a dis-utility
    When work is viewed as a sacrifice of leisure and comfort performed only in exchange for money.
  24. Official Plan
    A planning document which regulates land use within the boundaries of a local government (usually) by segregating land use on the basis of function.
  25. State
    The combination of sovereignty, territory and population; often attached to specific 'peoples' as in nation-state.
  26. Stewardship
    From the old English term 'steward' which usually refers to someone who administers, manages or controls on behalf of others; the word is also imbued with the sense that a steward occupies a position of trust; a position of responsibility; and a position which implies a sense of 'caring for'. In most cases the position of steward is a public position or a not-for-profit position (as in the case of the stewards of a private club)...stewardship implies acting in the common interest and anticipating the needs of the future.
  27. Convention
    An agreement reached at an international meeting at which states which are authorized to sign the agreement or convention do so on the condition that they must return home and have the convention ratified by their legislature. Once a designated number of states have ratified the convention it comes into force. Living up to the commitments made in the convention requires each state to enforce this within itself.
  28. Locke’s definition of private property
    Each person has characteristics or properties including labour. When a person mixes labour with nature the person endows that piece of nature with his/her properties thus making the piece of nature (e.g. an apple) his/her personal property.
  29. What are the eight sets of claims regarding the Women-Nature Connection that Warren puts out?
    • 1. Historical, Typically Casual, Connections
    • 2. Conceptual Connections
    • 3. Empirical and Experimental Connections
    • 4. Symbolic Connections
    • 5. Epistemological Connections
    • 6. Political (Praxis) Connections
    • 7. Ethical Connections
    • 8. Theoretical Connections
  30. Ecofeminism as defined by Warren
    Ecological feminism is the name given to a variety of positions that have roots in different feminist practices and philosophies. These different perspectives reflect not only different feminist perspectives (e.g., liberal, traditional Marxist, radical, socialist, black and Third World), they also reflect different understandings of the nature of and solution to pressing environmental problems
  31. Women-Nature Claim: Historical, Typically Causal, Connections
    One alleged connection between women and nature is historical. When historical data are used to generate theories concerning the sources of the dominations of women and nature, it is also causal. So pervasive is the historical causal theme in ecofeminist writing that Ariel Salleh practically defines ecofeminism in terms of it: "Eco feminism is a recent development in feminist thought which argues that the current global environmental crisis is a predictable outcome of patriarchal culture" (Salleh 1988).
  32. Women-Nature Claim: Conceptual Connections
    Many authors have argued that, ultimately, historical and causal links between the dominations of women and nature are located in conceptual structures of domination that construct women and nature in male biased ways.... Frequently cited examples of these hierarchically organized value dualisms include reason/emotion, mind/body, culture/nature, human/nature, and man/woman dichotomies. These theorists argue that whatever is historically associated with emotion, body, nature, and women is regarded as inferior to that which is (historically) associated with reason, mind, culture, human (i.e., male) and men.
  33. According to Warren, dualism is developed in two additional forms:
    (A) where dualism based value frameworks are used to justify other forms of domination including racism and sexism and the domination of nature; and (B) a conceptual basis for differences between males and females in understanding dualism: The claim is that female bodily experiences (e.g., of reproduction and childbearing), not female biology per se, situate women differently with respect to nature than men.
  34. Women-Nature Claim: Empirical and Experiential Connections
    Many ecofeminists have focused on uncovering empirical evidence linking women (and children, people of color, the underclass) with environmental destruction. Some point to various health and risk factors borne disproportionately by women children, racial minorities and the poor caused by the presence of low level radiation, pesticides, toxics, and other pollutants...
  35. Women-Nature Claim: Symbolic Connections
    Some ecofeminists have explored the symbolic association and devaluation of women and nature that appears in religion, theology, art, and literature. Documenting such connections and making them integral to the project of ecofeminism is often heralded as ecofeminism's most promising contribution to the creation of liberating, life afffirming, and postpatriarchal worldviews and earth based spiritualities or theologies.
  36. Women-Nature Claim: Epistemological Connections
    The various alleged historical, causal conceptual, empirical, and symbolic woman nature connections (discussed above) have also motivated the need for new, ecofeminist epistemologies. Typically these emerging epistemologies build on scholarship currently under way in feminist philosophy, whigh challenges mainstream views of reason, rationality, knowledge, and the nature of the knower.
  37. Women-Nature Claim: Political (Praxis) Connections
    Francoise d'Eaubonne introduced the term "ecofeminisme" in 1974 to bring attention to women's potential for ecological revolution...
  38. Women-Nature Claim: Ethical Connections
    To date, most of the philosophical literature on woman nature connections has appeared in the area of environmental philosophy known as "environmental ethics." The claim is that the interconnections among the conceptualizations and treatment of women, animals, and (the rest of nature) ethical analysis and response...
  39. Women-Nature Claim: Theoretical Connections
    The varieties of alleged woman nature connections discussed above have generated different, sometimes competing, theoretical positions in all areas of feminist and environmental philosophy. Examples include Marxist, libertarian anarchist, Kantian and the balance of the full range of philosophic schools.
Card Set
Politics of the Environment
politics environment