Environmental Science

Download e-book for iPad: Controversies in Environmental Sociology by Robert White

By Robert White

ISBN-10: 0521601029

ISBN-13: 9780521601023

This primary accomplished Australian textual content on environmental sociology covers all the present key matters and controversies within the box. each one bankruptcy considers crucial subject matters and debates, highlighting relevant figures and the social nature of environmental-related developments. as well as drawing upon particular Australian assets, the textual content displays foreign advancements in environmental sociology.

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Example text

Usury is the practice of charging interest on monetary loans. Ecological degradation is often described in Western mass media as solely a technological or scientific problem. This is a particularly ethnocentric view. There is still room for debate about the solutions RELIGIONS AND ENVIRONMENTS 19 recommended by Muslims, eco-feminists, Buddhist and indigenous thinkers. However, they all agree that the source of the problem lies as much in cultural and religious understandings as it does in technological problems.

It is important, however, not simply to dismiss science on the basis of these examples but to consider, in more detail, why scientific observation is not a neutral but a theory-laden and political act. When choosing what to observe, scientists are influenced by what they believe already to be theoretically and socially relevant. When collecting data, they filter the infinite range of things that potentially could be observed through existing theory and experience. Patterns are observed in the data with which scientists are already familiar, and therefore scientific observation tends to support existing theory and existing solutions to social and environmental ‘problems’ (see Kuhn 1962; Feyerabend 1988).

Murdoch, J. 1995, ‘Actor-networks and the evolution of economic forms: combining description and explanation in theories of regulation, flexible specialization, and networks’, Environment and Planning A 27: 731–58. Murdoch, J. 1997, ‘Inhuman/nonhuman/human: actor-network theory and the prospects for a nondualistic and symmetrical perspective on nature and society’, Environment and Planning D: Society and Space 15: 731–56. Murdoch, J. 2001, ‘Environmental sociology and the ecological challenge: some insights from actor network theory’, Sociology 35(1): 111–33.

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Controversies in Environmental Sociology by Robert White


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