Defending the Earth: A Dialogue Between Murray Bookchin and Dave Foreman

Murray Bookchin, Author, Steven B. Chase, Editor, Dave Foreman, With South End Press $13 (160p) ISBN 978-0-89608-382-0
Bookchin and Foreman are the primary avatars of the two major schools of thought in the radical wing of the environmental movement, ``social ecology'' and ``deep ecology,'' respectively. The former includes human needs in its larger visionp. 21 ; the latter argues for the intrinsic value of nature, claiming that ``social'' ecology defends ``the creation of an instrumentalized world and its exploitation.'' As quickly becomes clear from the book, which is primarily the transcript of a public discussion between Bookchin and Foreman organized in November 1989 by New York City's Learning Alliance, this summation does injustice to the complexities of the arguments (particularly Bookchin's). Bookchin emerges as the more articulate debater, holding forth convincingly for a libertarian politics that would lead to a movement ``neither anthropocentric nor misanthropic,'' in opposition to ``deep'' ecology positions that are ``potentially . . . anti-social and anti-human.'' Regrettably, this volume has a bit too much ``committed preaching to the converted'' to be useful as a handbook for the newcomer to this debate, but for those already involved in the radical ecology movement it should fuel some arguments. Chase is a member of the South End Press collective. (June)
Reviewed on: 06/28/1999
Release date: 07/01/1999
Genre: Nonfiction
Hardcover - 147 pages - 978-0-89608-383-7
Paperback - 147 pages - 978-0-921689-88-1
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