In this passionate, lucid, and surprising book, Timothy Morton argues that all forms of life are connected in a vast, entangling mesh. This interconnectedness penetrates all dimensions of life. No being, construct, or object can exist independently from the ecological entanglement, Morton contends, nor does 'Nature' exist as an entity separate from the uglier or more synthetic elements of life. Realizing this interconnectedness is what Morton calls the ecological thought. In three concise chapters, Morton investigates the profound philosophical, political, and aesthetic implications of the fact that all life forms are interconnected. As a work of environmental philosophy and theory, "The Ecological Thought" explores an emerging awareness of ecological reality in an age of global warming. Using Darwin and contemporary discoveries in life sciences as root texts, Morton describes a mesh of deeply interconnected life forms - intimate, strange, and lacking fixed identity.
A 'prequel' to his "Ecology without Nature: Rethinking Environmental Aesthetics (Harvard, 2007)", "The Ecological Thought" is an engaged and accessible work that will challenge the thinking of readers in disciplines ranging from critical theory to Romanticism to cultural geography.
Timothy Morton is Rita Shea Guffey Chair of English at Rice University.
Timothy Morton has a unique take on ecology that challenges much of the alternative consciousness that floats around on the periphery of environmental circles. He offers a profound take on human possibilities. To Morton, human society and Nature are not two distinct things but rather two different angles on the same thing. Tikkun 20110629 By suggesting imaginative ways to resolve other crises, could humanities scholars stave off the crisis engulfing their own subjects? Morton proposes a future in which the venerable ideas of "nature" and "environment" are so much detritus, useless for addressing a looming ecological catastrophe. His book exemplifies the "serious" humanities scholarship he makes a plea for. My head's still spinning. -- Noel Castree Times Higher Education 20110908 Morton's The Ecological Thought rejects the romantic concept of nature as a passive foil to human action. The natural world, as it turns out, is not something outside of us; or, put another way: there is no difference between humans and our environment...He asks us to engage in "radical openness" as a way of practicing "radical coexistence," a state of being that we live even when we do not think much about it...Morton's book allows us to see our stirrings of sympathy for nonhuman beings such as strawberries as the beginning of a recognition that we have all--people and plants alike--lost long ago our presumed roots in an imagined natural world. -- Natania Meeker and Antonia Szabari Los Angeles Review of Books 20120509
Harvard University Press
Harvard University Press
Place of Publication
Country of Publication
University of California, Davis