Published in 2009
It’s all over the news: the environment is the new pet of popular culture. Climate change, once considered a controversial theory, has become a defining issue of our era. For the first time ever, the public is citing environmental quality as a top tier political issue. Designer canvas grocery bags are selling for fifty dollars apiece, and trash has become art. The buzz among the hip is that Green is the new Black.
At the same time, the pioneers of the green movement are heading towards retirement, passing their legacies of advocacy, conservation, research, and education to a generation born in a digital world. Novel applications of molecular genetics have altered our understanding of life, its origins, and its lineages. Complex systems theory has transformed our perception of how species develop and ecosystems function.
Volume 16 of Whole Terrain invites reflections on the link between evolution and revolution that we have defined as (r)(e)volution. Revolution and evolution are strikingly different processes, yet both can create new life and new paradigms when conditions are ripe. As threats to the environment ascend in our psyche, and as technological insights radicalize our view of nature, are we engaged in a revolution with our relationship to the natural world? Or are we evolving at a glacial pace, unable to adapt to the changes happening around us? How do we describe the current surge of innovative thought and social consciousness with regard to our environment? Is the movement we’re seeing superficial, or indicative of long-term, lasting transformation? What is the inherent tension between the social, ecological, and intellectual processes that define our time?
No revolutionary manifestos, please. Whole Terrain seeks personal, reflective explorations of today’s changing environmental movement.