GENED 1117. Nature


  • Professor: Joyce Chaplin
  • Term: Spring
  • Time: TBA
  • School: Faculty of Arts and Sciences
  • Course ID: 109030
  • Subject Area: General Education

The planet is in crisis; we live in a state of emergency. Our emergency circumstances encompass a range of daunting environmental problems that make inaction simply not an option. We need to think clearly and calmly about this crisis to craft the best possible solutions. But the kind of clear, calm thought we will need to use requires two kinds of understanding. First, we must think with precision about what nature is, especially in its ethical dimensions. Second, we will need to understand how to deal with the inevitable tradeoffs any solutions to our environmental crises will bring with them. How, in short, is it possible to craft solutions that will be as just as possible, to as many people as possible? And if that justice should extend beyond the human community, to include the nonhuman parts of nature, how will this be accomplished? This class is designed to give you an intellectual, verbal, and ethical toolkit for dealing with the important debates over imperiled natural resources and competing human needs that will only become more urgent as the years go by.