chapter  1.3
6 Pages

Green Philosophy

WithJanis Birkeland

The dominant paradigm of development is supported by a construction of reality that legitimises environmental exploitation. Green theories have challenged the basic premises of this paradigm, and have sought to replace it with a new environmental ethic. Green theorists began to construct analyses of the many systemic pathologies that work against these preconditions, such as industrialism, colonialism, capitalism, sexism, classism, consumerism, racism and militarism. Many green theorists avoided the issue of power by developing transcendent philosophies, such as spiritual ecology and deep ecology. The movement gradually broadened its analyses to integrate left-wing theories and environmental justice more generally. Social justice and non-violence, biological and cultural diversity, democracy and participatory decision making, and non-competitive and non-hierarchical forms of social organisation, became broadly accepted by the green movement as essential 'preconditions' of a sustainable society. A range of green schools of thought were developed which focused on different dimensions of these social pathologies.