Ecofeminism

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Today, we live in a world interwoven with women's oppression, ecological degradation, and the exploitation of workers, race, and class. In the midst of these troubles, a movement known as ecofeminism appears to be gaining recognition. In the following, I hope to illustrate this revitalization movement . I will begin by characterizing a definition of ecofeminism; I will then bring to the forefront the ethical issues that Ecofeminism is involved with, then distinguish primary ideas and criticisms. Though in theory, ecological feminism has been around for a number of years, it emerged as a political movement in the 1970s. Francoise d'Eaubonne, a French feminist philosopher, coined the term "Ecofeminism" in 1974. Ecofeminism is a feminist approach to environmental ethics. Karen Warren, in her book Ecofeminist Philosophy, claims that feminist theorists question the source of the oppression of women, and seek to eliminate this oppression. Ecofeminists consider the oppression of women, (sexism) the oppression of other humans (racism, classism, ageism, colonialism), and the domination of nature (naturism) to be interconnected. In her book New Woman/New Earth, Rosemary Radford Reuther wrote, "Women must see that there can be no liberation for them and no solution to the ecological crisis within a society whose fundamental model of relationships continues to be one of domination. They must unite the demands of the women's movement with those of the ecological movement to envision a radical reshaping of the basic socioeconomic relations and the underlying values of this society (204)." Ecofeminists hold the domination of women as their focus as they see the root cause of nature domination and the domination of others as due to a patriarchal conceptual framework. Warren states that a conceptual framework is defined as "a set of basic beliefs, values, attitudes, and assumptions which shape and reflect how one views oneself and one's world. (64)" It is a "lens" through which...
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