Respect for Nature: A Theory of Environmental Ethics

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Princeton University Press, Apr 11, 2011 - Philosophy - 360 pages
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What rational justification is there for conceiving of all living things as possessing inherent worth? In Respect for Nature, Paul Taylor draws on biology, moral philosophy, and environmental science to defend a biocentric environmental ethic in which all life has value. Without making claims for the moral rights of plants and animals, he offers a reasoned alternative to the prevailing anthropocentric view--that the natural environment and its wildlife are valued only as objects for human use or enjoyment. Respect for Nature provides both a full account of the biological conditions for life--human or otherwise--and a comprehensive view of the complex relationship between human beings and the whole of nature.

This classic book remains a valuable resource for philosophers, biologists, and environmentalists alike--along with all those who care about the future of life on Earth. A new foreword by Dale Jamieson looks at how the original 1986 edition of Respect for Nature has shaped the study of environmental ethics, and shows why the work remains relevant to debates today.

 

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Respect for nature: a theory of environmental ethics

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Some environmental philosophers stress our duty to prevent environmental deterioration because of our obligations to future generations of human inhabitants of the earth (cf. H. J. McCloskey's ... Read full review

Contents

ONE ENVIRONMENTAL ETHICS AND HUMAN ETHICS
3
TWO THE ATTITUDE OF RESPECT FOR NATURE
59
THREE THE BIOCENTRIC OUTLOOK ON NATURE
99
FOUR THE ETHICAL SYSTEM
169
FIVE DO ANIMALS AND PLANTS HAVE RIGHTS?
219
SIX COMPETING CLAIMS AND PRIORITY PRINCIPLES
256
BIBLIOGRAPHY
315
INDEX
325
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