Female mallard, by me.
UK nature, animal and conservation charities ~ some founded and inspired by courageous Victorian women such as Octavia Hill, Beatrix Potter, Anna Sewell, Alice Drakoules, Emily Williamson, Eliza Phillips ~ have been increasingly dominated by a patriarchal economy and scientific reductionism.
I’m here to say that emotions are absolutely vital. Cast off as irrational, the domain of the inferior female mind, weak, unreliable, emotions are far from it. They are evolutionary drivers of change. Lest we forget.
As humans, we are part of nature. The love we humans feel is a also a force in non-human ecological relationships (I argue via my soon-to-be-submitted Masters thesis), and a powerful one; a force that is inherent in life’s positive, generative interconnections and processes (Fluminism).
This is my secular perspective, based on ecological studies of mycelium/tree biosemiotics, cross pollination and the microbiome (within to without ourselves). I propose there is, and always has been, more relevance of co-operation over competition.
Biocentrism, Ecocentrism and new Anthropocentrism are cited largely by men in this field (Taylor, Naess, Fox, Sessions, Attfield, Passmore, et al). My work contributes to the academic field of enviroethics, in that it is the interconnections that are of primary value, ulitimately preserving both individals AND the whole, co-operatively, as opposed to a competitive-based fabrication of choice.
“Male-centredness (a good parallel in some ways to human-centredness), can be damaging to men as well as to women. It makes men insensitive to dependencies as interconnections, as well as devaluing women.” Val Plumwood.
Does it matter now that I am a woman, particularly a British woman, presenting fluminism? I think so, though I am yet to explore this in detail and, hence, vigorously defend. What do you think?
What I am sure of is that love, as a doing word, and an ‘ethic of care’ (Carol Gilligan), ensures continuance & proliferation of natural relationships, interactions and processes.
Everything merges, overlaps, blends, co-exists. Boundaries once thought impenetrable are now being found porous. Even taxonomists are finding this out. Life is complex; cosmological to quantum, and our values need to catch up with that reality.