This book undertakes the first general assessment of ecological economics from a Marxist point of view, and shows how Marxist political economy can make a substantial contribution to ecological economics. The analysis is developed in terms of four basic issues: (1) nature and economic value; (2) the treatment of nature as capital; (3) the significance of the entropy law for economic systems; (4) the concept of sustainable development. In each case, it is shown that Marxism can help ecological economics fulfill its commitments to multi-disciplinarity, methodological pluralism, and historical openness. In this way, a foundation is constructed for a substantive dialogue between Marxists and ecological economists.
Remarkable advances are being made in life science and agricultural research to reform methods of food production, particularly with regard to staple grain and legume crops, in ways that will better reflect ecological realities. However, advances in science may be insufficient to ensure that these possibilities for agricultural reform are realised in practice and in a sustainable way. This book shows how these can only be achieved through changes in legal norms and institutions at the global level. Interdisciplinary in character, the book draws from a range of issues involving agricultural innovation, international legal history and principles, treaty commitments, global institutions, and environmental challenges, such as climate change, to propose broad legal changes for transforming global agriculture. It first shows how modern extractive agriculture is unsustainable on economic, environmental, and social grounds. It then examines the potential for natural-systems agriculture (especially perennial-polyculture systems) for overcoming the deficiencies of modern extractive agriculture, especially to offset climate change. Finally it analyses closely the legal innovations that can be adopted at national and international levels to facilitate a transition from modern extractive agriculture to a system based more on ecological principles. In particular the author argues for the creation of a Global Convention on Agroecology.
This book explores three interrelated roots of scholarly work that have a supportive and elaborative affinity to authentic and engaging classroom inquiry: ecological consciousness, Buddhist epistemologies, philosophies and practices, and interpretive inquiry or hermeneutics". Although these three roots originate outside of and extend far beyond most educational literature, understanding them can be of immense practical importance to the conduct of rich, rigorous, practicable, sustainable, and adventurous classroom work for students and teachers alike. The authors collectively bring to these reflections decades of classroom experience in grades K-12 and the experience of supervising hundreds of student teachers in such settings as well as working regularly with schools and classroom teachers in their day-to-day work. The authors demonstrate, through several classroom examples, how ecology, Buddhism, and hermeneutics provide ways to re-invigorate the often-moribund discourse of education and bring a sense of beauty and rigorous joy to classroom life for teachers and students alike.
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