chapter  1
12 Pages


This introduction presents an overview of key concepts discussed in the subsequent chapters of this book. The book aims to bring broad philosophical reflection and analysis to the human encounter with the natural environment. It addresses all three of these areas: ethics, aesthetics, and culture in general, as they relate to the natural environment. The book proposes that the environmental degradation that we are increasingly experiencing is best conceived as the result of a general cultural mismatch. It discusses environmental ethics in a cultural context that is quite different from the North American or European. The book explores those queries the relation between ethical theory and moral practice. It considers the question whether it makes any sense to engage in nature restoration, given that such interventions seem, rather, to constitute further artefactuality. The book confronts the notion of restoration with the shaping of natural processes in traditional Japanese gardens and in site-specific installations called 'earthworks' or 'land art'.