Analysis William Cronan's "The Trouble with Wilderness"

1235 WordsDec 5, 20075 Pages
The rapid industrialization of the Earth has been one of the greatest changes the earth has undergone, surpassing in magnitude the numerous ice ages or massive extinctions. This industrialization prompted a large chunk of the Earth's population to dwell in cities. As a result, much of the wide open spaces of "nature" were transformed into an environment dominated by buildings and congested with roads and people. It is then no surprise that humans separate themselves from nature and expect nature to be "pristine." Imagine for a moment that you are at a place where you feel like you are "away from it all." It's a special place where you are surrounded by sceneries not usually commonplace. You are surrounded by rows of, swarms of bugs and the…show more content…
The self sustenance of "non-human" nature is an essential corrective to human egoism. Arrogance and apathy will further worsen the situation. Until now, William Cronan has been generally agreeable; however, his opposition to Bill McKibben's ideas in The End of Nature is quite puzzling. William Cronan argues that Bill McKibben's view of nature and wilderness are flawed. In The End of Nature, Bill McKibben writes about the environmental problems plaguing the Earth today. In his view, humans today are controlling the atmosphere around them more than ever before. Our ancestors used to live in an environment which they could easily predict. Seasons came at the right time, winters were cold and summers were hot. Now, because of global warming, that predictability has all but disappeared. The climate has become erratic and violent. It is this point that Bill McKibben tries to get across; the idea that the nature we perceive in our minds will be gone forever. Nowhere does McKibben imply that humans should be considered to be separate from nature. In fact, most of the time, McKibben's arguments seem similar to that of William Cronan's. They both agree, for example, that we are currently changing the earth more than ever before and that we are losing the tenuous understanding that we had of the earth. They agree that we must take action, for the Earth

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