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Rethinking Nature: Public Visions in the Netherlands


  • Riyan J.G. van den Born


This study addresses two questions: (1) what visions of nature do lay people subscribe to? (2) to what extent do these visions reflect those of professional philosophers? Four philosophical images of the human-nature relationship were discussed with respondents; Master, Steward, Partner and Participant. Respondents recognise these images, but prefer to construct their own. Elements of their images are (1) that humans are part of nature, but (2) that they are responsible for nature as well. This study indicates that empirical philosophy can contribute to the further development of environmental philosophy. Through an empirical turn we can discover people's own voice.

Suggested Citation

  • Riyan J.G. van den Born, 2008. "Rethinking Nature: Public Visions in the Netherlands," Environmental Values, White Horse Press, vol. 17(1), pages 83-109, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:env:journl:ev17:ev1706

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    More about this item


    Visions of nature; attitudes towards nature; values of nature; environmental philosophy; qualitative research; Netherlands;

    JEL classification:

    • D46 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Value Theory


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