Sustainability has become a compelling topic of domestic and international debate as the world searches for effective solutions to accumulating ecological problems. In Return to Nature? An Ecological Counterhistory, Fred Dallmayr demonstrates how nature has been marginalized, colonized, and abused in the modern era. Although nature was regarded as a matrix that encompassed all beings in premodern and classical thought, modern Western thinkers tend to disregard this original unity, essentially exiling nature from human life. By means of a philosophical counterhistory leading from Spiza to Dewey and beyond, the book traces successive efforts to correct this tendency. Grounding his writing in a holistic relationism that reconnects humanity with ecology, Dallmayr pleads for the reintroduction of nature into contemporary philosophical discussion and sociopolitical practice. Return to Nature? unites learning, intelligence, sensibility, and moral passion to offer a multifaceted history of philosophy with regard to our place in the natural world. Dallmayr's visionary writings provide an informed foundation for environmental policy and represent an impassioned call to reclaim nature in our everyday lives.
Fred Dallmayr, Emeritus Packey J. Dee Professor of Philosophy and Political Science at the University of Notre Dame, USA, is the author of In Search of the Good Life: A Pedagogy for Troubled Times, The Promise of Democracy: Political Agency and Transformation, and Integral Pluralism: Beyond Culture Wars. He lives in Notre Dame, Indiana.