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ERIC Number: ED511169
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Oct
Pages: 10
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 29
ISSN: ISSN-1548-6613
Learning for the Natural Environment: The Case against Anthropocentrism
Horsthemke, Kai
Online Submission, US-China Education Review v6 n10 p22-31 Oct 2009
The world (Africa in particular) is in a progressive state of environmental crisis, caused by global warming, loss of biodiversity, human overpopulation, pollution, massive deforestation and desertification, urbanization and many other environmental problems and risk factors. For several commentators and theorists, part of the solution resides in the provision of pertinent and adequate education, including environmental education. The present paper briefly examines the history of environmental education, internationally and in South Africa, and some of its most prominent current trends and issues, before critiquing its general orientation. Arguing against what appears to lie at the heart of environmental education and literacy, namely anthropocentrism (ideas like "education for sustainable development"), the paper urges a radical rethinking of its central concerns and modus operandi, in terms of facilitating learning for the natural environment. In other words, in order to live up to its promise of contributing towards life beyond the twenty-first century, such learning must include the realization that nature matters in and for itself. "The architecture of moral status (adapted from Horsthemke, 1993)" is appended. (Contains 4 footnotes.)
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Africa; South Africa