Volume 17 · Number 3 · Pages 179–189
Loving the Earth by Loving a Place: A Situated Approach to the Love of Nature

Laura Candiotto

Log in download the full text in PDF

> Citation > Similar > References > Add Comment

Abstract

Context: I extend the enactive account of loving in romantic relationships that I developed with Hanne De Jaegher to the love of nature. Problem: I challenge a universal conceptualization of love of nature that does not account for the differences that are inherent to nature. As an alternative, I offer a situated account of loving a place as participatory sense-making. However, a question arises: How is it possible to communicate with the other-than-human? Method: I use panpsychist and enactive conceptual tools to better define this situated approach to the love of nature and to reply to the research question. In particular, I focus on Mathews’s “becoming native” and the generative tensions that unfold in a dialectic of encounter when a common language is not shared. Results: The fundamental difference experienced in encountering the other-than-human is generative for building up the human-Earth connection if we let each other be listened to. I describe the ethical dimension that permeates this type of “enactive listening” at the core of a situated account of love of nature. Implications: Love of nature is of paramount importance in our current climate crisis characterized by environmental anxiety, despair, and anger. A situated love of nature emphasizes the importance of community-based local interventions to preserve the Earth. Love, thus understood as a fundamental moral and political power, is a catalyst for environmental activism. Constructivist content: My article links to participatory sense-making as defined by De Jaegher and Di Paolo, and De Jaegher’s loving epistemology. It offers a broader understanding of participatory sense-making that includes the other-than-human. It also introduces the new concept of “enactive listening.”

Key words: Becoming native, enactive listening, enactivism, Freya Mathews, love, nature, place, participatory sense-making, panpsychism, situated affectivity.

Citation

Candiotto L. (2022) Loving the earth by loving a place: A situated approach to the love of nature. Constructivist Foundations 17(3): 179–189. https://constructivist.info/17/3/179

Export article citation data: Plain Text · BibTex · EndNote · Reference Manager (RIS)

Similar articles

Werner K. (2017) Coordination Produces Cognitive Niches, not just Experiences: A Semi-Formal Constructivist Ontology Based on von Foerster
Vörös S. & Riegler A. (2017) A Plea for not Watering Down the Unseemly: Reconsidering Francisco Varela’s Contribution to Science
Fultot M. F., Nie L. & Carello C. (2016) Perception-Action Mutuality Obviates Mental Construction
Villalobos M. & Ward D. (2016) Lived Experience and Cognitive Science Reappraising Enactivism’s Jonasian Turn
Prosen T. (2022) A Moving Boundary, a Plastic Core: A Contribution to the Third Wave of Extended-Mind Research

References

Berg P. (ed.) (1978) Reinhabiting a separate country: A bioregional anthology of Northern California. Planet Drum Foundation, San Francisco CA. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Bird Rose D. (2011) Wild dog dreaming: Love and extinction. University Press of Virginia, Charlottesville. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Candiotto L. & De Jaegher H. (2021) Love in-between. The Journal of Ethics 25(4): 501–524. https://cepa.info/7687
Candiotto L. & Pezzano G. (2019) Filosofia delle relazioni. Il melangolo, Genova. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Chalmers D. (2013) Panpsychism and panprotopsychism. The Amherst Lectures in Philosophy, Lecture 8. http://www.amherstlecture.org/chalmers2013
Chandler D. & Reid J. (2019) Becoming indigenous: Governing imaginaries in the anthropocene. Rowman & Littlefield, Lanham. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
De Jaegher H. & Di Paolo E. (2007) Participatory sense-making: An enactive approach to social cognition. Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 6(4): 485–507. https://cepa.info/2387
De Jaegher H. (2021) Loving and knowing: Reflections for an engaged epistemology. Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 20(5): 847–870. https://cepa.info/7689
De Jaegher H., Di Paolo E. A. & Gallagher S. (2010) Can social interaction constitute social cognition? Trends in Cognitive Sciences 14(10): 441–447. https://cepa.info/4349
Href="https://cepa.info/author/De Jaegher" target=_blank>De Jaegher, H, Pieper B., Clénin D. & Fuchs T. (2017) Grasping intersubjectivity: An invitation to embody social interaction research. Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 16: 491–523. https://cepa.info/4350
Devall B. & Sessions G. (1985) Deep ecology: Living as if nature mattered. Peregrine Smith Books, Salt Lake City. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Di Paolo E. A. & De Jaegher H. (2021) Enactive ethics: Difference becoming participation. Topoi, Online first. https://cepa.info/7523
Di Paolo E. A. (2005) Autopoiesis, adaptivity, teleology, agency. Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 4(4): 429–452. https://cepa.info/2269
Di Paolo E. A. (2021) Enactive becoming. Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 20: 783–809. https://cepa.info/7523
Di Paolo E. A., Cuffari E. C. & De Jaegher H. (2018) Linguistic bodies: The continuity between life and language. MIT Press, Cambridge MA. Reviewed in. https://constructivist.info/15/2/194
Dierckxsens G. (2022) Introduction: Ethical dimensions of enactive cognition – Perspectives on enactivism, bioethics and applied ethics. Topoi, Online first. https://cepa.info/7691
Earnshaw O. (2019) Disorientation and cognitive enquiry. In: Candiotto L. (ed.) The value of emotions for knowledge. Palgrave Macmillan, London: 177–193. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Fisher M. (1990) Personal love. Duckworth, London. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Fourlas G. N. & Cuffari E. C. (2022) Enacting ought: ethics, anti-racism, and interactional possibilities. Topoi, Online first. https://cepa.info/7696
Frankfurt H. (1999) Autonomy, necessity, and love. In: Necessity, volition, and love. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge: 129–141. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Fredriksson A. (in press) A phenomenology of attention and the unfamiliar: Encounters with the unknown. Palgrave, London. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Furtak R. (2018) On the love of nature. In: Martin A. M. (ed.) The Routledge handbook of love in philosophy. Routledge, New York: 205–214. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Gagliano M. (2018) Thus spoke the plant: A remarkable journey of groundbreaking discoveries and personal encounters with plants. North Atlantic Books, Berkeley. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Hämäläinen N. (2017) Three metaphors toward a conception of moral change. Nordic Wittgenstein Review 6(2): 47–69. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Haraway D. (2008) When species meet. University of Minnesota Press, Minneapolis. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Haraway D. (2016) Staying with the trouble: Making kin in the Chthulucene. Duke University Press, Durham. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Heidegger M. (2000) Vorträge und Aufsätze [Lectures and essays]. In: Gesamtausgabe VII. Klostermann, Frankfurt am Main. Originally published 1936–1953. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Kleres J. & Wettergren A. (2017) Fear, hope, anger, and guilt in climate activism. Social Movement Studies 16(5): 507–519. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Kurio J. & Reason P. (2021) Voicing rivers through ontopoetics: A co-operative inquiry. River Research and Application, early view. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Lorde A. (1984) Uses of the erotic: The erotic as power. In: Sister outsider. Crossing Press, Berkeley: 53–59. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Maclaren K. (2002) Intercorporeality, Intersubjectivity and the problem of “letting others be.” Chiasmi International: Trilingual Studies Concerning Merleau-Ponty’s Thought 4: 187–210. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Maclaren K. (2011) Emotional clichés and authentic passions: A phenomenological revision of a cognitive theory. Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 10: 45–65. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Malpas J. (2018) Place and experience: A philosophical topography. Routledge, London and New York. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Mancuso S. (2015) Brilliant green: The surprising history and science of plant intelligence. Island Press, Washington DC. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Mancuso S. (2021) The nation of plants. Profile Books, London. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Martin A. M. (ed.) (2019) The Routledge handbook of love in philosophy. Routledge, New York. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Mathews F. (2003) For love of matter: A contemporary panpsychism. SUNY Press, Albany. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Mathews F. (2005) Reinhabiting reality: Towards a recovery of culture. University of New South Wales Press, Sydney. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Mathews F. (2007) The world hidden within the world: A conversation on ontopoetics. The Trumpeter 23(1): 64–84. http://trumpeter.athabascau.ca/index.php/trumpet/article/view/942/1355
Mathews F. (2009) Introduction: Invitation to ontopoetics. PAN Philosophy Activism Nature 6: 1–7. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Mathews F. (2016) Ardea: A philosophical novella. Punctum books, Goleta. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Mathews F. (2016) Without animals life is not worth living. Ginninderra Press, Port Adelaide. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Muir J. (1901) Our national parks. The Riverside Press, Cambridge. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Neidjie B. (1989) Story about feeling. Megabala Books, Broome. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Nozick R. (1989) Love’s bond: In the examined life. Simon and Schuster, New York. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Nussbaum M. (2001) Fragility and goodness: Luck and ethics in Greek tragedy and philosophy. Revised edition. Cambridge University Press, New York. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Oliver M. (2017) Devotions: Selected poems of Mary Oliver. Penguin, New York. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Petitmengin C. (2021) Anchoring in lived experience as an act of resistance. Constructivist Foundations 16(2): 301–310. https://constructivist.info/16/2/172
Plato (1989) Lysis, symposium, gorgias. Translated by W. R. M. Lamb. Loeb Classical Library. Harvard University Press, Cambridge MA. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Plumwood V. (1993) Feminism and the mastery of nature. Routledge, London. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Roberts L. (2017) A revolution of love: Thinking through a dialectic that is not “one.” Hypatia 32(1): 69–85. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Scruton R. (1986) Sexual desire: A moral philosophy of the erotic. Free Press, New York. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Snyder G. (1990) The practice of the wild: Essays. North Point Press, San Francisco. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Snyder G. (1996) Mountains and rivers without end. Counterpoint, Berkeley. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Solomon R. C. (1988) About love: Reinventing romance for our times. Simon & Schuster, New York. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Solomon R. C. (2002) Reasons for love. Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour 32: 1–28. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Spinoza B. (2002) The complete works. Translated by Samuel Shirley. Hackett, Indianapolis. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Szymborska W. (1996) View with a grain of sand: Selected poems. Translated by S. Baranczak & C. Cavanagh. Harcourt Brace, New York. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Thompson E. (2007) Mind in life. Harvard University Press, Cambridge MA. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Ureña C. (2017) Loving from below: Of (de)colonial love and other demons. Hypatia 32(1): 86–102. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Varela F. J. (1991) Organism: A meshwork of selfless selves. In: Tauber A. (ed.) Organism and the origin of self. Kluwer, Dordrecht: 79–107. https://cepa.info/1959
Varela F. J. (1996) Neurophenomenology: A methodological remedy for the hard problem. Journal of Consciousness Studies 3: 330–335. https://cepa.info/1893
Velleman J. D. (1999) Love as a moral emotion. Ethics 109: 338–374. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Vlastos G. (1973) The individual as object of love in Plato. In: Platonic studies. Princeton University Press, Princeton: 3–34. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Weber A. (2016) Biopoetics: Towards an existential ecology. Springer, Dordrecht. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Weber A. (2017) Matter and desire: An erotic ecology. Chelsea Green Publishing, White River Junction. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Weber A. (2020) Sharing life: Animism as ecopolitical practice. Alternative Worldviews, New Delhi. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar
Whyte K. P. (2020) Against crisis epistemologies. In: Hokowhitu B., Moreton-Robinson A., Tuhiwai-Smith L., Andersen C. & Larkin S. (eds.) Routledge handbook of critical indigenous studies. Routledge, London: 52–64. ▸︎ Google︎ Scholar

Comments: 0

To stay informed about comments to this publication and post comments yourself, please log in first.