Reconstructing Conservation

Reconstructing Conservation

Finding Common Ground

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Edited by Ben A. Minteer and Robert E. Manning

334 pages pages | 6 X 9

In the 1990s, influenced by the deconstructionist movement in literary theory and trends toward revisionist history, a cadre of academics and historians led by William Cronon began raising provocative questions about ideas of wilderness and the commitments and strategies of the contemporary environmental movement. While these critiques challenged some cherished and widely held beliefs -- and raised the hackles of many in the environmental community -- they also stimulated an important and potentially transformative debate about the conceptual foundations of environmentalism.

Reconstructing Conservation makes a vital contribution to that debate, bringing together 23 leading scholars and practitioners -- including J. Baird Callicott, Susan Flader, Richard Judd, Curt Meine, Bryan Norton, and Paul B. Thompson -- to examine the classical conservation tradition and its value to contemporary environmentalism. Focusing not just on the tensions that have marked the deconstructivist debate over wilderness and environmentalism, the book represents a larger and ultimately more constructive and hopeful discussion over the proper course of future conservation scholarship and action.

Essays provide a fresh look at conservation icons such as George Perkins Marsh and Aldo Leopold, as well as the contributions of lesser-known figures including Lewis Mumford, Benton MacKaye, and Scott Nearing. Represented are a wealth of diverse perspectives, addressing such topics as wilderness and protected areas, cultural landscapes, rural/agrarian landscapes, urban/built environments, and multiple points on the geographic map. Contributors offer enthusiastic endorsements of pluralism in conservation values and goals along with cautionary tales about the dangers of fragmentation and atomism. The final chapter brings together the major insights, arguments, and proposals contained in the individual contributions, synthesizing them into a dozen broad-ranging principles designed to guide the study and practice of conservation.

Reconstructing Conservation assesses the meaning and relevance of our conservation inheritance in the 21st century, and represents a conceptually integrated vision for reconsidering conservation thought and practice to meet the needs and circumstances of a new, post-deconstructivist era.



PART I. Introduction

Chapter 1. Conservation: From Deconstruction to Reconstruction \ Ben A. Minteer and Robert E. Manning


PART II. Nature and Culture Reconsidered

Chapter 2. Writing Environmental History from East to West \ Richard W. Judd

Chapter 3. The Nature of History Preserved; or, The Trouble with Green Bridges \ Robert McCullough

Chapter 4. Going Native: Second Thoughts on Restoration \ Jan E. Dizard

Chapter 5. Conservation and Culture, Genuine and Spurious \ Luis A. Vivanco


PART III. Reweaving the Tradition

Chapter 6. Expanding the Conservation Tradition: The Agrarian Vision \ Paul B. Thompson

Chapter 7. Regional Planning as Pragmatic Conservationism \ Ben A. Minteer

Chapter 8. Building Conservation on the Land: Aldo Leopold and the Tensions of Professionalism and Citizenship \ Susan Flader

Chapter 9. Scott Nearing and the American Conservation Tradition \ Bob Pepperman Taylor

Chapter 10. Conservation and the Four Faces of Resistance \ Eric T. Freyfogle

Chapter 11. Conservation and the Progressive Movement: Growing from the Radical Center \ Curt Meine


PART IV. New Methods and Models

Chapter 12. Conservation: Moral Crusade or Environmental Public Policy? \ Bryan Norton

Chapter 13. Social Climate Change: A Sociology of Environmental Philosophy \ Robert E. Manning

Chapter 14. Reconstructing Conservation in an Age of Limits: An Ecological Economics Perspective \ David N. Bengston and David C. Iverson

Chapter 15. The Implication of the ?Shifting Paradigm? in Ecology for Paradigm Shifts in the Philosophy of Conservation \ J. Baird Callicott

Chapter 16. An Integrative Model for Landscape-Scale Conservation in the Twenty-First Century \ Stephen C. Trombulak


PART V. Reconstructing Conservation Practice: Community and the Future of Conservation Stewardship

Chapter 17. Community Values in Conservation \ Patricia A. Stokowski

Chapter 18. Stewardship and Protected Areas in a Global Context: Coping with Change and Fostering Civil Society \ Brent Mitchell and Jessica Brown

Chapter 19. Reinventing Conservation: A Practitioner?s View \ Rolf Diamant, J. Glenn Eugster, and Nora J. Mitchell

Chapter 20. Conservation Stewardship: Legacies from Vermont?s Marsh \ David Lowenthal


PART VI. Conclusion

Chapter 21. Finding Common Ground: Emerging Principles for a Reconstructed Conservation \ Ben A. Minteer and Robert E. Manning



About the Contributors


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334 pages pages | 6 X 9
publication year: 
2 003