The Anthropocene

Love it or leave it 1

Authored by: Dale Jamieson

The Routledge Companion to the Environmental Humanities

Print publication date:  January  2017
Online publication date:  January  2017

Print ISBN: 9781138786745
eBook ISBN: 9781315766355
Adobe ISBN: 9781317660194

10.4324/9781315766355.ch1

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Abstract

One of the central themes of classical philosophy is the persistence and puzzling nature of change. Throughout the history of philosophy this concern appears, disappears, reappears, and never completely goes away. There is a similar oscillation in our sciences between an interest in equilibrium states and a fascination with the sources and persistence of disorder. Which is primary, order or disorder, change or permanence? Perhaps it is a coincidence that the period and place in which I grew up (1950s America) was characterized by an obsession with “progress,” but a dislike for change. Both nature and the economy sought equilibrium, and the nation itself was on the way to a more perfect union. Or so it seemed to me that it seemed to my elders.

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