ERIC Number: ED413125
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1996
Providing an Authentic Wilderness Experience? Thinking beyond the Wilderness Act of 1964.
Borrie, William T.; Roggenbuck, Joseph W.
Wilderness programs should seek to capture the qualities of a wilderness experience that separate it from other outdoor activities. In so doing, wilderness programs should move beyond the goals of the Wilderness Act of 1964 to provide "outstanding opportunities for solitude or a primitive and unconfined type of recreation." Drawing upon the writings of such wilderness philosophers as Thoreau, Muir, Leopold, and Olson, the following six aspects of the wilderness experience are examined: humility and a sense of humans' true place in the natural world; oneness with nature; primitiveness and a sense of the past; timelessness and the natural rhythms of life; solitude and privacy; and care for the land, which leads to conservation priorities. The Experience Sampling Method was used to study the extent to which these six aspects were part of the subjective experience of 62 canoeists in the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge. Subjects carried beepers that gave random signals twice daily, at which times respondents completed questionnaires about their thoughts, feelings, and experiences of the moment. The results were used to develop six composite scales that were reliable measures of the six aspects of the wilderness experience. However, the validity of these measures, as well as of the six dimensions themselves, requires further testing. Contains 32 references. (SV)
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A