Response to Prompt 3: Romanticism


     Environmental romanticism and anthropocentrism will both have to be compromised in order for our planet to be sustainable for future generations to come. Romanticism is based upon the value found within the natural beauty and simplicity of nature in its purest form. While anthropocentrism is based on the distribution of intrinsic value, the value that an object holds in its own right, amongst human and nonhuman beings. Strong anthropocentrism claims that only human beings possess intrinsic value. While weak anthropocentrism claims that both human and nonhuman beings possess intrinsic value, however, the magnitude of human interests almost always outweighs those of nonhumans. Rather than specifically focusing on the extreme ends of the environmental spectrum, it’s important to begin evaluating and maintaining biological diversity by focusing on non-anthropocentrism ideas.

     Biological diversity is simply defined as the “variety and variability among living organisms and the ecological complexes in which they occur.” It can include factors such as the abundance and spatial distribution of species, genotypes, functional traits, and landscape units. Biological diversity is valued within an ecosystem not only for its intrinsic properties, but also for its ability to affect the overall well-being of the human race both now and in the future. Biological diversity is important for the reason that it incorporates the relationship between civilizations and ecosystems through the production of ecosystem services. These ecosystem services include plant and animal biomass production, climate regulation, pollination, protection against natural hazards, as well as several other factors related to social-ecological sustainability and management. Together all of these ecosystem services are essential to the functioning of our planet and are equally valued when compared to one another.

     Therefore, by focusing on biological diversity, individuals are able to depart from previously acknowledged environmental beliefs and embrace innovative ones such as those of non-anthropocentrism. By doing so the health and safety of our ecosystem, its resources, and its processes will be sustained; and the stabilization of our human and nonhuman beings will follow. 


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