Thursday, August 7, 2008


eco-pathology has a certain ring to it. A Google search turns up: the study of biological, physical, human and economic causal elements of disease in livestock. However, in Ecology and the End of Postmodernity, George Myerson (in a very postmodern way), decides on his own interpretation of the term. He bases it on Freud's idea of psycho-pathology. Just as Freud read unsettling meaning into the minute details of everyday human behaviour, assuming them to be symptomatic of underlying trauma, Myerson feels that we (predominantly the media) now read danger signs for imminent ecological disaster in all natural events.

For instance, even the fact that more cafes are opening street seating indicates
an increase in global temperatures. On a larger scale, outbreaks of SARS, Mad-Cow disease, AIDS etc. are indicative of a rampaging nature run amok. Floods in the UK are a sign of climate change and rising sea levels.

This is all part of a new Grand Narrative (hence the title of the book... Myserson claims we are returning to Modernity) of Ecology. Science, Technology and Governments will see us through. To act against the mainstream is irresponsible. We must all bow to the experts with the ability to forecast the gloomy future.

Sadly the world and its ecosystems are in a declining mess. It is our fault. It doesn't take an expert to notice. It takes a moron to think otherwise. I don't know how to describe those who still insist that profit and shareholder dividends cannot be sacrificed in the name of environmentalism. "Shallow Ecology" anyone? :-(

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