chapter  6
12 Pages

Temporality and the Rhythms of Sustainable Landscapes

The second comment is the conclusion where Buttimer remarks that 'the knowledges which the twentieth century has produced in academic and applied settings are apparently not of the kind needed for guiding imagination beyond the current contradictions' (2001, 378). The contradictions to which she refers are those implicit in objective scientific observation, for this is necessarily filtered through cultural practices and is really not objective at all. I agree that a different kind of understanding is needed if we are to imagine ourselves out of the present situation, but I think the foundation for this can be found in phenomenological insights about existence and the experience of time, many of which were articulated in the twentieth century as a sort of counter-knowledge to prevailing scientific methods. Phenomenology understands time as it is experienced, with complex links between recollection, the present moment and anticipation. This understanding is known as 'temporality,' and it is temporality that underlies and must inform sustainability.