Arguing for a renewed view of objects and nature, Ethical Responses to Nature’s Call considers how it is possible to understand our ethical duties - in the form of ethical intuitionalism- to nature and the planet by listening to and releasing ourselves over to the call or address of nature.
Blending several strands of philosophical thought, such as Graham Harman’s Object Oriented Ontology, W. D. Ross’s Prima Facie Ethics, Alphonso Lingis’s phenomenological ethics traceable to The Imperative, and Michael Bonnett’s eco-philosophy, this book offers a unique rejoinder to the problems and issues that continue to haunt humans’ relationship to nature. The origins of such problems and issues largely remain obscured from view due to the oppressive influence of the "cultural framework" which gives form and structure to the ways we understand, discourse, and comport ourselves to the natural world. Through understanding this "cultural framework" we also come to know the responses we continue to offer in response to nature’s call and address, and are then in a position to analyze and assess those replies in terms of their potential ethical weight. Such a phenomenon is made possible through the descriptive-and-interpretivemethod of eco-phenomenology.
This renewed vision of the human-and-nature provides direction for our interaction with and behaviour towards nature in such a way that the ethical insight offers a diagnosis and provides a potentially compelling prescriptive for environmental ills.
"With his excellent new book, Reticent Imperatives: Our Ethical Response to Nature’s Call, James M. Magrini has written an important and much needed contribution to the field of eco-phenomenology. Not only does Margini develop eco-phenomenology in an original way, but he also introduces a new stance on ethics and Object Oriented Ontology. With his book, Magrini is clearing a path for us, living in an era approaching environmental catastrophe, to hear and listen to the call of Nature, that is, what Magrini names "ontological aurality." This inception of an original ethics of ontological aurality and excess can be compared to Martin Heidegger’s insistence on "the silent power of the possible." In Magrini’s version of Heidegger’s adage, the environment, as an excessive object which reveals itself in its very withdrawal, is indeed the power of the possible, or as Magrini pointedly expresses it "a living force." This living force is the very possibility of a new foundation for an ethics developed out of, precisely, reticent imperatives. These imperatives which, indeed, resolutely sound out of the book’s call to our environmental conscience." — Elias Schwieler, Associate Professor of Education, Stockholm University, Sweden
"This is an important book that explores in a philosophically rigorous manner the topic of nature’s ‘voice’ and its significance for achieving an authentic relationship with nature – that in turn is central to responding to the environmental crisis that currently besets us. Magrini has a gift for identifying the most germane issues and for interpreting and weaving together a wide range of cogent views. The result is a stimulating read that makes an imaginative and essential contribution to the literature in the field." — Michael Bonnett, University of Cambridge, UK
PART I Eco-Phenomenological Issues: Transcending the Metaphysics of Presence
1. Introducing Eco-Phenomenology: Methods, Problems, and Proposed Solutions
2. The Cultural WeltanSchauung: "Naturalistic" Framework and Our Interaction with Nature
Part II The Ethical Call of Nature: Reticent Imperatives
3. A Reconceived Philosophy of "Objects" and Nature: Object Oriented Ontology and Eco-Phenomenology
4. Duties and Imperatives in a Reconceived Ethics of Nature: Ethical Intuitionism and Phenomenology
5. The Phenomenology of Human-and-Nature Involvements: The Ethical Call of Nature’s Reticent Imperatives