Deep Power: The Political Ecology of Wilderness and Civilization

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Nova Science Publishers, 2000 - Science - 149 pages
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Civilization is trashing the earth faster than the earth can heal herself. The list of atrocities is endless: global warming, ozone depletion, deforestation, declining sperm-counts, desertification, topsoil erosion, fisheries depletion, hazardous waste dumping, outer space pollution, acid rain, overpopulation and so on. We are now on the brink of the earth's sixth mass extinction -- the only one caused by humans. The human species, as presently organized, has become maladaptive to the global environment.

The author concludes that the answer to this problem is that we don't need to save civilization for humans, we need to save humans from civilization. Humans need to return to natural law, obeying the dictates of evolution. Only then can the earth heal herself. By separating us from the wild, civilization has cut us off from the energy of the universe. Since energy is power, separating humans from nature makes them powerless. Civilization's destruction of nature, therefore, is fundamentally a question of power.

We need "deep power", namely the balancing of physical and material power with its underlying metaphysical or spiritual power. Without deep power, purely physical or shallow power becomes distorted and self-destructive. This book is about balancing -- balancing physical power with metaphysical power. Civilization has made humans unbalanced; when they start walking in balance, they will become deeply powerful and the earth will be able to heal herself. It is time that social scientists incorporate the metaphysical into their analyses; it can only make the social sciences more powerful and, above all, useful. In this book the author cites a wide array of research supporting thenotion of the metaphysical -- studies that have employed conventional scientific methods but have been all too conveniently -- and justifiably -- ignored.

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The Great Trauma
Domesticating the Wild
PowerShallow and Deep

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About the author (2000)

DAVID KOWALEWSKI is Associate Professor of Political Science and Sociology at Alfred University, and has written widely on dissent and repression.

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