ENV 2301 Lecture Notes - The Boy Who Cried Wolf, Ancient Society, Ecocentrism

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History of Environmental Thought
Ancient Roots
Special Interest Assignment
Think about an aspect of human-nature relation or environmental topic
Guidelines up this week
Wolf Society
- Live and hunt in packs
o Basic organizational unit=breeding adult pair + offspring and other
adults
o Breed 1X/year
- Fascinating and complex social structure
o Hierarchy and cooperation
- Communications
o Why do wolves howl?
o Do wolves howl at the moon?
Wolves in Ancient Society
- Nomadic, nature-based societies
o Wolves and humans part of natural systems
o Wolves admired, respected, revered
- Wolves in ancient beliefs mythologies
Wolf-human relations in Western Society
- Very complex, problematic
- Agricultural societies
o Human settled on land possession control
o Wolves represented a threat (to farm land and livestock)
o Wolf persecuted in Europe
o North America (fairy tales)
Wolves in Language
- A lone wolf
- To wolf down food
- To cry wolf
- A wolf in sheep’s clothing
- The wolf is at the door
Worldview a basic perspective for our view on the world, shapes our behaviour,
beliefs, pg. 4..
Environmental Worldviews
Basic Categories:
- Egocentric
o Me and my interests
o Places the individual at the centre of the universe, everything done to
support their interests
- Anthropocentric
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