Department of Geography and the Environment

Colloquium: "Healing Ourselves, Renewing the Earth: Practicing Engaged Ecology," Friday 2/17

Mon, February 13, 2017

Dr. Vicente Lopes, Department of Biology, Texas State University

Friday, February 17th at 3p in CLA 0.128

Our “detached” way of viewing the world erroneously separates us humans from, and often unnecessarily elevates us above, the larger community of life on Earth. Under the illusion of separation from Nature, we have created an ideal of liberalism based on the individual pursuit of self-interest, leading the way into a profoundly flawed image of disconnected power with disastrous social-ecological consequences. This presentation bridges ecological insights with philosophical and psychological ideas to bring about the conception of Engaged Ecology, or philosophy of ecological harmony. Engaged Ecology is not a discipline but a radically new way of thinking based on a growing understanding of ecology, systems theory, and the natural world as an interdependent whole. It starts with the assumption that our inner world (memories, feelings, dreams) and outer world (rivers, trees, rocks, buildings) are intimately interconnected, and it is primarily concerned with the transformation of our hearts and minds to reawake our connection and interdependence with the web of life that brought us forth.

Dr. Vicente Lopes is a professor of environmental studies at Texas State University and co-organizer of the San Marcos Ecophilosophy Meetup. A lifelong eco-centric theorist and advocate of community-based approaches to sustainability, his work blends environmental science and ecophilosophy with ecopsychology and systems theory and is directed towards integrating nature, people, and place using watersheds as socio-ecological context.

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  • Department of Geography and the Environment

    The University of Texas at Austin
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