New ethics for old? Or, how (not) to think about future generations

T. Ball

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Scopus citations


Radical environmentalists often deery and dismiss as outmoded and dangerous the 'western' ethic of individualism, of freedom and autonomy, of individual rights. They hope to replace this ethic with one that is post-individualist and non-Western, and either radically new or old and native-indigenous. Only then they say, will the well-being of the planet and its present and future inhabitants be protected from the predation of the present generation. I argue that this view is unrealistic as well as unnecessary, in as much as western liberal-individualist discourse contains at least some of the moral and conceptual resources out of which a responsible environmental ethic can be constructed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)89-110
Number of pages22
JournalEnvironmental Politics
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2001
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
  • Sociology and Political Science


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