Matter, Media, and Mind: A Three-Fold Approach to Ecologies
Ecology is typically defined as the study of relationships between organisms and environments, and the relationships of organisms to one another. This essay explores how this definition of ecology is inadequate in the context of a twenty-first century Earth community where the range of ecologies include radically different types of actors ranging from the biotic (e.g., salamanders, oak trees, or daffodils), the abiotic (e.g., nitrogen, mountains, or desert canyons), and the technological (e.g., damns, cities, or farms). By partitioning off distinct types of entities I believe we are already off to a bad start when considering what “Ecology,” in its deeper sense, might actually mean. In response to these partitions, this essay suggests another way forward: a re-visioning of ecology in the context of Alfred North Whitehead’s speculative cosmology. By thinking ecology with Whitehead we will be able to demonstrate a simple and surprising truth: all relations of any kind—be they between sea anemones and coral reefs or between philosophers and the world—are ecological in nature. By generalizing the definition of ecology to include relations of any kind, we expand our notions of what ecology is all about, and our ability to enact a cosmopolitics—a planetary thought for a planetary ecology—is greatly enhanced.
I am inspired here by Donna Haraway’s (2007) concept of “becoming with” and in this sense am interested in forwarding an ecology present to a world teaming with entities both human and nonhuman, organic and technological, cosmic and terrestrial. With the aim of re-visioning ecology in the spirit of “becoming with” my first task will be to show that organisms do not, and have never, “lived in” something called an environment, at least not in the usual sense of this understanding. What we find instead are not two types of entities, but one type of entity existing at different scales of complexity and intensity. Following Bruno Latour (1993), I will call these entities simply “actors,” a term akin to what Alfred North Whitehead calls “actual occasions” or “societies” (1978). By thinking ecologically in terms of actors and actual occasions we come to the realization that, rather than finding organisms relating to environments, we find interactions between different kinds of ecological actors forming an oscillating, Möbius-like strip enfolding the boundaries between inside and outside, individuals and environments; eating away at the “outhereness” the word environment implies.
My second task is to head in the opposite direction. If the first goal is to call into question the distinction between organism and environment, thereby minimizing the ontological plane of activity, my second goal will be to multiply the number of “ecologies” one ought to consider when thinking about “Ecology.” This essay introduces three interdependent ecologies, not because there are only three types of ecologies, but rather because it is these three ecologies that are the most relevant when considering the interlocking crises which face our planet today. These ecologies are latent in Whitehead’s cosmology, but need to be given fresh articulation in the spirit of “maintain[ing] an active novelty of ideas” (Whitehead, 1968, p. 174) contextualized by current planetary events such as globalization, climate change, and the mass extinction of species.
What are these three ecologies then? We can refer to them as the integral ecology of matter, media, and mind. The move to articulate multiple ecologies was already begun by Felix Guattari (2008), and Gregory Bateson (2000) before him, and both the French philosopher and the American cyberneticist will follow us along this journey, their thoughts clinging to the hull of this creaky ship of words like barnacles and algae to a weathered rock.
The point here is to understand how all organisms are both immersed amidst, and influenced by, the tri-ecological medium, and to suggest that ecological practices need to attend to all three ecologies in order to promote sound ethical behaviors.
To reiterate this essay forwards one primary point: all relationships of any kind are ecological in nature. We can call this re-visioning of ecology a kind of cosmopolitics because it is about learning how to live with the fact that the familiar binaries of nature/culture; cosmic/terrestrial; human/nonhuman do us no good on a planet where the plane of ecological interactivity includes panda bears, starfish, particle colliders, ozone holes, scientists, theologians, and solar flares (to name but a few). The Earth is filled with the deep blue of azurite crystals just as with the refined glass of interstellar telescopes, and we need an ecology that is comfortable exploring both.
Re-visioning Ecology in the context of an integral three-fold ecology requires further consideration of Whitehead’s cosmology. In the post-Kantian landscape of twentieth century philosophy, Whitehead, a mathematician by training, is one of the few philosophers—in either Continental or Anglo-American traditions—that took the practice of speculative philosophy seriously. In this regard, he is joined only by William James and Charles Sanders Pierce (Meyers, 2001) in articulating not just a “philosophy of human access” to the world, but a speculative wager, a “risk” in Isabelle Stengers’s (2010) sense of the word, on what the cosmological character of the world is, with or without a human observer present to experience it. Through Whitehead, we find not two ontological worlds—one composed of humans, technology, and culture; and one composed of minerals, plants, and animals—but rather one ontological plane of interactivity, within which humans are an expression of an ongoing, primordially unfolding state of activity. In one sense an ecology inspired by Whitehead’s speculative philosophy attempts to carry forward a project initiated by Bruno Latour in his work We Have Never Been Modern (1993). Where Latour argued against the idea that reality could be partitioned into the disparate strata called “nature” and “culture,” this paper argues against the idea that ecology is limited to the interaction between “organisms” and “environments.”
In a tone not unlike that of James and Latour, we can call Whitehead’s philosophy a kind of radical empiricism to the extent that his cosmology articulates a vision that puts experience at the center of his philosophical project (Shaviro, 2009, p. 66). Insofar as, “For Whitehead, there is no ontological difference between what we generally call physical objects and what we generally call mental or subjective acts” (Shaviro, 2009, p. 21) we can say that all entities—technological, biotic, or cognitive—enjoy the same ontological status. In placing all occasions on the same plane of activity, Whitehead overcomes what he calls the “bifurcation of nature” through which the real is demarcated into separate categories (“causal” and “apparent” nature), the former often permitted to possess a greater intensity of reality than the latter (Whitehead, 2010, p. 38).
Ecology demands of us a rigorous understanding of the multi-directional and promiscuously unfolding nature of the ecological world we inhabit, a task not readily served by the organism-environment distinction. I am inspired here by what Tim Morton calls the ecological thought:
The ecological thought is the thinking of interconnectedness. The ecological thought is a thought about ecology, but it is also a thinking that is ecological. The ecological thought doesn’t just occur “in the mind.” It’s a practice and a process of becoming fully aware of how human beings are connected with other beings—animal, vegetable, or mineral. Ultimately, this includes thinking about democracy. What would a truly democratic encounter between truly equal beings look like, what would it be—can we even imagine it? (2010, p. 7)
I take Morton’s assertion that the ecological thought is a thought about ecology but also a thinking that is ecological quite literally—ecology is not just about organisms juxtaposed to environments, it’s about the episodic encounters between actual occasions driving an evolutionary process that has been in play since before the organism/environment distinction could be made. In this sense, we are pointing towards what we might call a democracy of actors interacting on a vast and diverse cosmological plane.
Though perhaps an unorthodox utilization of the word “democracy” it is one that nevertheless echoes Whitehead’s own comments where he writes, “We find ourselves in a buzzing world, amid a democracy of fellow creatures” (1978, p.50); a commentary later echoed by Bruno Latour who, when considering what such a democratic ontology might look like in practice, asks “Will a different democracy become necessary? A democracy extended to things?” (1993, p. 12). Whitehead helps to accomplish the task of generating an expanded sense of ecological democracy by placing experience at the center of being; giving each actual entity its own undetermined action in the course of the universe, and by putting humans into reciprical exchange with the multitude of other beings in the cosmos. To quote Whitehead’s own words, “every actual entity, in virtue of its novelty, transcends its universe” (1978, pp. 93-94) and thus emits its own democratic participation in the cosmos as an entity not fully determined, but in contingent relation to other entities.
In effect, Whitehead’s cosmology finds no sympathy with a human exceptionalism built on the premise that humanity alone exists outside of the interdependent mesh of cosmological activity, and instead moves the human into a democratic ontology, an ecological cosmology. Such a cosmology affirms interconnectivity, but it also affirms separateness and difference, “interconnection” in fact, “implies separateness and difference” (Morton, 2010, p. 47). Thus we find these three notions—democracy, cosmology, and ecology—linked in deep ways that pose themselves as unanswered questions, as interrogative ontologies that dare to ask, “can we think cosmos, socius, and oikos at the same time?” It is in response to this question that a formulation of the three ecologies emerges; upon a plane that is at once material, social, and cognitive.
With Whitehead’s thinking in the background, we can look upon the entangled banks of the ecosystem and begin to see that whether we are referring to the passage of electrons, the chemical transference of nitrogen, or the grazing patterns of gazelle on the savannah, we are in fact only ever encountering different actualities—centers of experience—interacting with one another in different modes of complexity and intensity. Before moving on to a description of each ecology, some remarks about the general nature of this project are necessary.
First, by breaking down the distinction between organism and environment in favor of a single category, the ecological actor, one is also committed to a re-thinking of the ontological imagination that underpins the organism-environment binary. The first important question to ask here is of what use, beyond fanciful speculation, can be made of this revisionary project? For starters we can say that the three ecologies are useful in conducting ecological research insofar as they provide: (1) a helpful description of the three-fold nature of the entity in question; (2) an ethical account of the conditions for the possible emergence of different types of beings, their ongoing health, and the means by which they interact with other entities; and (3) an integrative approach to evaluating ecological issues at material, socio-cultural, and psychological levels.
Here Whitehead’s reflection on the actual occasion is worth dwelling upon further so that we can relate it to the three ecologies. For Whitehead, each actual occasion consists of three moments: (1) the subject which is “prehending,” (2) the “datum” prehended, and (3) the “how” or “subjective form” by which the subject prehends the datum (Shaviro, 2009, p. 55). Each of these three moments is integrally present in every actual entity as it comes into existence, acts, and perishes. Thus each of these three moments posits an episodic event that (a) simultaneously emerges from a particular, established structure or form (its material ecology); (b) mediates between other actual occasions through mediums specific to the extensions made available by a particular form of embodiment (its media ecology), and (c) relates in novel ways to other actual entities through a prehensive mode of experience (its mental ecology).
When we apply this way of thinking to organisms and environments we find that organisms are not one type of “thing” adapting to a different type of “thing.” Rather, we find one group of ecological actors coming into existence, acting, and perishing amidst a variety of other actors. There are no “environments” in the sense of containers existing “out there” surrounding organisms; there are instead whirring occasions of actuality, forming larger and smaller societies of ecological interactivity, each enfolding intimately with another, co-shaping complex and creative trajectories of evolution.
Second, by approaching each domain simultaneously, the three ecologies represent a postdisciplinary approach to ecology insofar as the material ecology corresponds to the life sciences, the media ecology to the social and cultural sciences, and the knowledge ecology to philosophy and the humanities. Given that ecology is relevant to all facets of life, I take it for granted that every academic discipline has valuable insights to offer ecological thinking, insights that cannot be gleaned from any other discipline.
Third, none of the three ecologies can be said to exist alone, as each is only a pragmatic abstraction drawn to highlight the increased need to recognize the vulnerable coexistence of all entities on the planet. Though all relations have an ecological character, these three terrains are, like Whitehead’s actual occasions, integrally present in all entities simultaneously. As a result, the following breakdown serves analytical purposes only.
The material ecology, when thought from a Whiteheadian perspective, is strongly consistent with recent advances in evolutionary biology that have likewise complexified the relationship between “organism” and “environment.” Richard Lewontin (1991), for example, has been among the foremost biologists advocating for renewed attention to the relationship between the genetic unfolding of an organism, and the environmental factors that play a central role in the gene’s expression. For Lewontin, common terms to describe genetic processes such as “self-replication” are grossly inadequate when acting as a heuristic for the organism’s developmental process; genes cannot be considered apart from a complex relationship between genes, organisms, and environments, since each component is partially responsible for constituting the others (1991). We find a similar notion arising out of Richard Dawkins’ (1999) “extended phenotype” where the distinction between an organism and its environment breaks down, extending the boundary of an organism’s phenotype into the surrounding environment. Still others have called for an “extended synthesis” over and beyond the “modern synthesis” which dominated twentieth century biology, or a “niche-construction” (Odling-Smee et al., 2003) paradigm that again takes seriously the complex interactions between biotic and abiotic entities that comprise ecological worlds. We may also mention the developmental-systems theory of Susan Oyama (2000) and the theory of Endosymbiogenesis formulated by Lynn Margulis (1998), both of which further complicate the distinction between organisms and environments as pre-defined, material constructions.
All of these readings of biology and evolution eat away at the distinction between inside and outside. What they all have in common is the view that neither organisms—nor the genes inside them—are unfolding within a pre-existing environment. Rather, each organism is a distinct individual, but also an assemblage; a wandering society of ecological activity passing in and out of other societies in complex, infectious currents of evolutionary concrescence. In the words of Donna Haraway, “Individuality is about selectable patterns of variation…so that…it’s not just that genes act within environments which include the organism, but genes themselves are already a crowd…a kind of Whiteheadian concrescence” (AAR, 22:00). Here again we find Whitehead laying the groundwork for an ecology based in the actual occasion. The notion of “concrescence,” interpreted as a form of novel togetherness, situates the field of evolutionary biology within the open, enfolded trajectories of insides and outsides; individuals and collectives, each acting at multiple stages of an organism’s development.
When taking these recent advances in evolutionary biology into account, it becomes clear that all organisms are active participants in the construction of complex material ecologies. With the recursive relationships between organisms and abiotic systems running so deep, it because very muddled what exactly is “organism” and what exactly is “environment,” since neither can rightly be said to exist without the other. It is true, for example, that the nitrogen and oxygen rich atmosphere of the Earth provides an ideal ecology within which numerous large mammals (humans included) can proliferate. The atmosphere is a material ecology in the sense that it is co-produced by the organisms that dwell underneath its starry umbrella. Take this beautiful passage on aerobiology from example, “We have finally come to realize that air is messy, being neither an empty space nor a void, but a space where species meet. And like any other life form, as Donna Haraway emphasizes, we find ourselves ‘in a knot of species coshaping one another in layers of reciprocating complexity all the way down’” (2008: 42). In other words, the atmosphere does not sit above us, containing us; rather, it is the emergent material ecology of billions of organisms producing the conditions for their own continued existence. We are inside the fluid medium of the atmosphere, recursively producing it with a host of organic and technological actors, not under it or contained by it, even as we are not fully determined by it.
Media ecology, a term first introduced by Neil Postman, refers to the “laws of media” or the so-called “tetrad” first outlined by Marshal and Eric McLuhan (1992). Media ecology has a simple and intuitive definition: media ecology is the study of media as ecology. For the McLuhan’s, the study of media involves understanding the ways in which humans extend their own cognitive and sensory capacities through externalized technologies. The tetrad was formulated as a methodological device to study media interactions and was based around four related questions: what does the medium enhance, make obsolete, retrieve, or reverse? The first two aspects—enhancement and retrieval—investigate what is foregrounded by a specific medium; the second two questions—retrieval and reversal—emphasize what is backgrounded by a specific medium (1992). These media extensions take many forms including the role of speech in oral societies, the role of text in literate societies, and the role of electronic communication in modern societies. Each of these media ecologies enhances, retrieves, reverses, and obsolesces different sensory patterns of organization (e.g., literacy foregrounds visual sensation, but backgrounds hearing; orality foregrounds hearing, but backgrounds seeing).
Jacques Ellul (1964) and Lewis Mumford (1989) are also considered media ecologists, though of a different stripe. Ellul critiques the way in which the technification of society (following the industrial revolution) has led to a reorganization of human labor and social relationships so that, in the post-industrial period, human societies become organized around the logic of machines (1964). As such the requirements of efficiency, rationality, automation, technification, and the subordination of more-than-ecologies are mandated in order for machine technology to continue thriving. Mumford launches similar critiques through an analysis of the history of technology and, more specifically, by tracing the history of the city as mode of human dwelling (1989). In this context media ecologies also include industrial technologies, cities, modes of production, and the ways in which all of these factors influence human social organization and psychology.
But where the Mcluhans and media ecologists fall short is by limiting the notion of media ecology to humans. For reasons mysterious to this scholar, the Mcluhans rejected the notion that the laws of media applied to other species (1992), despite the fact that beavers build damns, ants build colonies populated by millions (and engage in complex systems of agriculture), and that all organisms are in fact “niche-constructing” organisms, in part building their “environment,” and extending their own particular embodiments out of their own behavior (Odling-Smee et al., 2003). Pushing media ecology to include all organisms is an important step to take. But why stop there? It is possible to push media ecology even further when applied in a Whiteheadian sense, thereby generalizing the concept to incorporate any entity whatsoever.
When generalized, media ecology becomes much more interesting and takes on a fully ontological character. All of the laws of media described by the McLuhans could then apply not just to humans, but also to entities of all shapes and sizes. For cars, paved roads are a part of their media ecology; for mp3s, iPods are a staple of their media ecology; and for a variety of botanical items—tulips, apples, marijuana, and potatoes being among the most noted—human beings themselves constitute a functional feature of these organisms’ media ecology. In other words, the media ecology is not just limited to the ways in which humans extend themselves into their world, but rather notes the way in which any organism (and indeed any entity in the universe) extends itself into a world. In this sense, a Whiteheadian media ecology explodes the notion of the extended phenotype out of the biological realm to suggest that all actors are capable of becoming ecologies that can help proliferate and transform other actors given the right conditions.
Ecologies of Mind
Since all relations exhibit an ecological quality, much of what has been said about material and media ecologies is also true of what we might variously call the ecology of knowledge or, to quote Gregory Bateson’s memorable phrase, “the ecology of mind” (2000). As a preliminary definition, we can say that while media ecology is simply the study of media as ecology, knowledge ecology is the study of knowledge or mind as ecology. I forward that the ecology of knowledge is also the ontology of knowledge, which is to say that thoughts, knowledge, or ideas are occasions of experience in their own right, each with their own ability to impact the trajectory of surrounding entities. Here we should also note that, far from being an exclusively human affair, knowledge acquisition and mind-like behavior is not restricted to humans and higher mammals, but is a characteristic of all living beings in general (Bekoff, 2010).
Knowledge ecologies pre-date human beings by at least the 4 billion years within which life has existed on Earth, and possibly much longer; in this sense knowledge ecology can be seen as a subsection of a wider field of study known as “ecosemiotics,” which human ecologist Alf Hornborg, following Uexküll and Bateson, describes beautifully in the context of a rainforest ecosystem:
As Uexkull and Bateson have both in different ways shown, the material interactions of organisms in ecosystems presuppose their exchange and interpretation of signs…this can be generalized for the entire rainforest ecosystem. In a myriad similar ways, each organism and species exists by virtue of its capacity to perceive and interpret the world around it. An ecosystem is not a machine, where the various components mindlessly fulfill their functions as a reflection of the external mind of the engineer. Ecosystems are incredibly complex articulations of innumerable, sentient subjects, engaging each other through the lenses of their own subjective worlds (2001, p. 125).
Thus, in the case of human knowledge ecologies (which can be separated only abstractly from other ecologies), we find that humans are not alone on Earth in enacting perceived worlds. Rather, it is the human who arises within an already emplaced, living, and effulgent hum of other beings and their worlds. Amidst the pre-existing knowledge ecologies of orchids, chrysanthemums, and bonobos the human’s own mind is partly configured and extends outwardly, touching the surrounding landscapes with thoughts, language, and ritual. In other words, the human mind-space is only a small portion of a much larger ecology of minds that stretches across the Earth’s biosphere, and this matters when thinking about what ecology means.
As research into cognitive ethology has shown, all organisms, from amoeba to baleen whales, have a unique sense of the world within which they live (Bekoff, 2010). Knowledge ecologies thus imply that all organisms have an interior dimension, a psychological life (no matter how alien it may seem to that of the human) within which they construct a meaningful relationship to the worlds around them, and to the other entities they encounter (Esbjorn-Hargens and Zimmerman, 2009). As Whitehead notes, “Mental activity is one of the modes of feeling belonging to all actual entities in some degree, but only amounting to conscious intellectuality in some entities” (1978, p. 56). For a single cell, then, this consists in using the cell membrane not just as an enclosure, a point of protection, but also a zone of contact and interpretation. Biologists Francisco Varela, Evan Thompson, and Eleanor Rosch (1983) refer to this contact zone as the “structural coupling” between the cell and its world. As the cell encounters other actualities outside of the walls of its membrane, it must interpret those signals through the formal structures of its physical embodiment.
The world co-created by the organism and its environment is “enacted” by the particular sensorimotor structure of the organism. In this sense, the enactive paradigm shares much in common with what Jakob von Uexküll called the organism’s “Umwelt” which likewise posited the unique correlation between each organism and its environment. Uexkull, strongly reminiscent of Whitehead, famously stated: “We now know that there is not one space and one time only, but there are as many spaces and times as there are subjects, as each subject is contained by its own environment which possesses its own space and time” (2011, p. 102). In this sense, an environment exists, but only in correlation to specific organisms; the environment, on the other hand, is a notion far too abstract to refer to the physical ecologies amidst which organisms are born, live, and perish.
While knowledge ecologies are not exclusive to humans, it is in the context of the human that we find the explosion of many new knowledge ecologies (e.g., worldviews, paradigms, ideologies, myths, and other subtle ecosystems) exerting their own gravitational pull upon other actualities of experience. To be sure, an idea may not have the physical substantiality of a hammer or submarine, but it would be difficult to argue that ideas don’t impact the material conditions of the entities around them. In many cases it is an idea (neoliberal economics, for example) that is the decisive factor in generating relations between humans and nonhumans. A study of knowledge ecologies would thus include the role ideas, worldviews, paradigms, or ideologies play in co-shaping human and more-than-human worlds.
Knowledge ecologies have important implications for how we think about ideas. In the world of human knowledge, the idea acts as a cosmogram; an actor that is part of its surrounding terrain, an abstraction that is part of the territory it describes, exerting a pull on the world it tries to map. Ideas are things that, once generated by the thinker, immediately gain their own autonomy and ability to re-arrange other ideas. Plainly stated, ideas exist in the world in the same way as any other ecological actor; ideas are a part of the actuality of experience and are therefore amenable to an ecological interpretation. When mediated through the appropriate media ecologies, ideas can then impact the physical form of any other entity within their reach. As an abstraction, the idea is also a cryptogram, concealing certain features of the terrain it helps to enact. The contrast between the revealing and concealing character of the idea speaks to the fact that no single mode of thought has a monopoly on the real; rather, every idea is partial and relative to its ecology, capable only of exposing certain features of a more complex landscape. In this way knowledge ecology has a complex relationship to media ecology since both are actively foregrounding and backgrounding differed aspects of a more complex reality.
Cosmopolitics: Concluding Thoughts
Ecology exists both within and without the correlation between the human and world (or between any organism and its world) and for this reason ecology cannot be reduced to the relation between an organism and its enacted life-world(s). Rather, ecology speaks to a cosmos of numinous depth that breathes its presence into the flesh of our bodies, showering us with radioactive isotopes, interstellar gamma rays, and fractal mathematics as much as it does golden retrievers, probiotics, and nature parks. For this reason, ecology is not the same as environment; ecology is not the same as the relationship between organisms and the environments; ecology is another name for the erupting, evolutionary actuality of the cosmos and includes the rushing force of galaxies spinning around supernova cores just as readily as it does the composition of music, philosophy, and architecture.
A cosmopolitics in the context of ecology renders certain the fact that insides and outsides on the planet Earth have imploded. The smog-filled air we breathe is as much a product of the social and political thought patterns humans have enacted as it is of CO2 emissions being released by global confederations of technologically powerful producers and consumers. The ecology of knowledge in particular calls to mind the intimate connection between human thought, language, and culture, and the overriding reality that human beings are but one actor amidst a diverse society of beings—both within and without the human skin—living, breathing, and perishing inside of the much larger ecology of the Earth. The promise of a re-visioned ecology, sketched only in brief here, is that by taking ecology into account on three levels—matter, media, and mind—we are better able to construct practices of research that can aid the complex, multi-leveled worlds of which we are all a part.
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 cf. The Speculative Turn (2010)
 Here I follow Esbjorn-Hargens and Zimmerman (2009) in defining “postdisciplinary” as the capacity to move inbetween inter-, multi-, and transdisciplinary research models depending on the demands of the research in question.
 One might argue here that the car and the road are both extensions of the human insofar as they are designed to transport humans inbetween our cities and towns. However, while the car is certainly part of the media ecology of humans, the paved road ought to belong more to the media ecology of the car. Anyone who has ever thought about walking onto a busy freeway will notice immediately that this not a space designed for humans, even if it is constructed by them, it is through and through an ecology of the car.
 In Michael Pollan’s (2002) popular book The Botany of Desire, he explores the co-evolutionary relationships between humans and four plants (apples, tulips, marijuana and potatoes) to show that, were it not for cultivation and transportation by humans, none of these four plants would have proliferated as extensively and as widely as they have. Humans, along with their aircraft, trains, and ships are the media ecology for thousand of other species as well.
 Uexkull’s point here regarding biological organisms coheres nicely with Whitehead’s ontological statement about actual occasions wherein he writes, ““There is not just one ideal ‘order’ which all actual entities should attain. In each case there is an ideal peculiar to each particular actual entity, and arising from the dominant components in its phase of ‘givenness.’” (1978, p. 84). Whitehead in this way provides an ontological background within which Uexkull’s “Umwelt” theory and the insights gleaned from cognitive ethology can gel nicely with not just a generalized interiority of the organism, but moreover, a generalized interiority of the cosmos itself.
- Slow Thinking, Slow Science: Cosmopolitics and Ecological Ethics (knowledge-ecology.com)
- Industrial Ecology and Multiple Ontologies (knowledge-ecology.com)
- We hear about ecological successes, and publicized failures, but what are examples of what not to do? (greenanswers.com)
- Sunday Reading Part 1: Tim Morton on Disaster Ecology (knowledge-ecology.com)