Extending the Problem of Speaking for Others: Ramsey on Nature

1449 Words Feb 25th, 2018 6 Pages
This can happen even when one believes that they are justified in doing so or believe their intentions are noble. The same harms can occur when speaking for a speechless being or inanimate object such as nature. In Jeffry L. Ramsey’s paper Speaking for Nature?, the author extends the argument of speaking for others as proposed by Linda Alcoff in her work titled The Problem of Speaking for Others to include nature. In this essay, I will reconstruct and explain the problems with two arguments that Ramsey voices concerns about and in doing so demonstrate how these concerns contribute to the ongoing debates about the future of the environment. Also, I will argue and show that ultimately Ramsey’s advice is impractical and does not solve the problem of speaking for others because the problem lies not in how one goes about speaking for nature, but in the very act of speaking for nature. One argument made by those who take on the role of being a spokesperson for the environment is that nature ought to be restored to its original state with the help of science. Science, the study of the physical and natural world through observation and experiment, is thought to be an objective activity which has the ability to produce impartial results. A person would be able to accurately assess the natural state of an area with the use of scientific research and with those results be able to determine what…

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