With the common direction the Nature is the whole of the natural environment of the Ground and the forces which live it, the human beings, the Air, the Mer S, the world Minéral, Végétal (Forêt S…), and Animal.
In front of the loss continues Biodiversité during the last decades, the protection of the natural environments and the request for a Sustainable development became priorities for most of the Citoyen S of the majority of the countries.
Nature and philosophy
See also: Philosophy of nature
In the everyday usage, nature is often presented like demonstrator a will.
Designs of nature former to the great religions
In the Prehistory, in the Greek Antiquity (let us think of Vulcan, Neptune,…), at the Viking S (Thor), many were the divinities whom one called upon to calm divine anger. The Sun, symbol of a eternal Light, was often selected like object of Culte, in the ancient Egypt, or at the INCA S.
In the judeochristianism, nature like pertaining to a whole: creation
In a certain way, one can say that the Christianisme, according to the tradition Judaïque, désacralisé the nature, which was then associated with that of a divine Transcendance, external with the man.
In the Genesis, nature is presented in the Récit of Creation, like the work of creative God:
- “At the beginning, God created the skies and the ground” ().
The Création continues throughout " six jours". The sixth day, God creates the Homme and the Femme:
- “And God bless them, and he says to them: " Be fertile, multiply, fill the ground and subject it, and dominate over fish of the sea, the birds of the sky and any animal which is driven on the ground. ” ()
Nature is then presented as a book, it is an access to the Scriptures.
Holy Augustin, taking again the Greek philosophical tradition, sees in the creatures two types of nature: the gasoline ( essentia ) and the Substance ( substantia ). For him, “even more the ignoramus reads in the world”. The access keys to the Writings are then the Four directions of the Writing.
The allegorical Littérature of the Moyen-âge called upon several of these Sens for the interpretation of the texts. Alain of Lille (1114 - 1203) wrote for example two poems ( Anticlaudianus and Of planctu Naturae ) whose principal character is " Nature " , which is an emblematic figure of the laws of the world created by God. It specifies that these poems must be read on three levels: with the literal Direction (for the puerile understanding), with the moral Direction, or the allegorical Direction.
Another illustration of these representations of nature is in the series of the tapestries of the Lady to the unicorn, which is all charged with Allégorie S.
The subjacent idea is that nature does not do anything randomly, but is under a command Divin.
Advent of modern science
This idea prevails until the appearance of the modern design of science (Galileo).
With Galileo and Descartes, a news representation of the world appeared. Descartes rejects the Philosophie scholastic:
- “instead of this speculative philosophy that one teaches in the schools, one can about it find a practice, by which, connoissant the force and the actions of fire, water, the air, the stars, the skies, and all the other bodies which surround us, as distinctly as we connoissons the various trades of our craftsmen, we could employ them in same way with all the uses to which they are clean, and thus to return to us as Masters and owners of nature. ”
Into its philosophy, Descartes introduced radically new relationship between the man and nature.
With the traditional age at the 17th century, and the birth of modern science, one thus attends the invention of a new representation of nature. This representation is the result of the belief of much of philosophers of, according to whom nature was controlled by a universal law, the Gravitation. One perceives an extension of the limits of the known world to another planets. The world extends then to the Solar system which one knows the " lois" of evolution which it is possible to describe in a mathematical form.
The experimental method made it possible to make progress the Connaissance of the “natural” history (i.e of the Natural science). What made say to Merleau-Ponty that “the change of the idea likely to allowed its discovery”.
Emancipation of the thought
The modern time also invented the Liberté of Pensée ( Cogito ergo sum , said Descartes), it becomes possible to speak publicly about Athéisme.
The divine intervention becomes more abstract then, confined with the mystery of the Foi. Thus, certain forms of Empirisme do not reject the concept of Foi and Religion, on the contrary: the Experimental method of the physicist and Irish chemist Robert Boyle, for example, rests on a Foi lived in the scientific Expérimentation.
Descartes and Spinoza rejects the design aristotelician of nature, the existence of God being perceived on a plan purely Métaphysique. A new design of the man appeared at the 18th century, a man who rests more on the Raison and on the Expérience to include/understand the world. At the 19th century, the concept even of Métaphysique grows blurred almost completely, submerged by the Idéologie S.
This design of the man is thus late in occident, but also new in the history of the world. The social sciences do not inherit a vacant field because the “man did not exist”.
But this emancipation partial of humanity therefore did not remove any form of belief. During the Lights, whereas the practices religious S are often perceived like Superstition S by the philosophers, the popular design of a sacralization of nature took a very particular emphase. Thus, the belief in a creative god is very present through the Déisme: didn't Voltaire believe in a creative god, who would have given up the Humanité with his sad destiny? This Croyance pushed in the extreme generated the Culte of the supreme Reason and Être. It is significant to note that in this context of Déchristianisation, among the civic festivals, it is the festival of the nature which will have really success.
semantic Evolutions and esthetics
Another corollary was an evolution of the sensitivity Esthétique. The Hierarchy of the kinds of traditional painting, for example, granted little importance to the landscape. This one occupied as from the 19th century a place much more important.
multiple Directions of the natural word
But the design Cartésienne of nature therefore did not remove the Sens than give the Naturaliste S of this mot. the history of the Natural science watch than the Interaction of the living beings between them and with their medium was a constant concern of many Scientifique S. the birth of modern ecology, than one can locate about the 18th century, illustrates the diversity of the topics studied in ecology, and in a more general way in the Natural science.
The natural word took different directions according to the contexts:
“nature” becomes the whole of real being unaware of the modifications made by the Homme, themselves described as artificial. “nature” is then what does not undergo working of a human purpose Technique. They is accordingly that exist certain products described as “natural” (or biological), their production not having required products “invented” by the man (for example a Fruit will be known as “naturalness” when it is produced without the assistance of Insecticide or of genetic transformation). This distinction implies a separation between the man and nature on the criterion of the intention (moral direction).
the “natural” word, employee in the expression “human nature” for example, preserves a more traditional direction which is the whole of the fundamental characters which define the physical personality or Morale of a to be. One can also employ it in natural expression the “of the communication” gasoline to check: which are the relationship between being, natural, substance and gasoline? -->.
The concept of nature thus carries in it of the philosophical questions, through the reports/ratios which the man maintains with the natural environment and the Environnement, its designs of the social life, and the multiple directions which it is possible to allot to the natural word in the social Représentations.
The natural word thus preserved directions muiltiples. The current concerns Environnementale S show how much it is important to identify Finalité S in each particular Contexte.
Origins of life and evolution
Microbe SAugust 1st
Plant SAugust 1st
Gaïa assumptionAugust 1st
See also: Assumption Gaïa
The Hypothèse Gaïa is the theory initially advanced by James Lovelock in 1969, but also evoked by Johannes Kepler as of the 17th century, according to which the totality of the terrestrial matter Vivante on Ground (or any planet on which the life developed) functions like a vast organization (called Gaïa (see also Théories Gaïa), according to the name of the Greek goddess), having a self-regulation which permanently adapts planet to its Besoin S. the concept of Biosphère stated by Vernadsky in 1924 went already in it direction.
Human interaction, environment
- Pollution, emissions of Gas to greenhouse effect
Protection of nature
Associations of study and protection of nature are major actors in the field of protection of nature. Nearly 3000 local associations gather within the Natural France national federation Environment (). A certain number of association of departmental or regional scale decline this national name according to the territories concerned (ex: Natural Mayenne Environment () /ou the Natural Sologne Environment ().
Interaction of the human communities with nature
The concept of nature returns a priori to the idea of a field having its own principles of development, which would be out of the action of the Homme. However, it is realized today that the climate change has an origin Anthropique. The idea of nature is thus not sufficient. There are a complementarity and an interaction between the human nature and communities. The draft of this reciprocal complementarity can light with the concept of Culture.
One notes for example that the concepts of natural heritage and Cultural heritage are closely dependant, by observing the World heritage UNESCO which draws up a list of natural and cultural sites.
The convention of 2007 of UNESCO underlines the interaction of the human communities with nature, in the definition which was given immaterial cultural heritage:
“This immaterial cultural heritage, transmitted from generation to generation, is recreated permanently by the communities and groups according to their medium, of their interaction with the Nature and of their Histoire, and a feeling of Identité and continuity gets to them, thus contributing to promote the respect of the Cultural diversity and the human creativity. ”
See also: Culture and natural
Two directions of the word culture in French
The concept of Culture recovers two directions:
The first corresponds to the idea of Civilization. This idea is as old as the history of humanity, but found a new significance with the Philosophy of the Lumières. In this direction, the culture is the distinctive feature of the human Espèce, associated with its knowledge and know-how. This French design of the culture would be rather individualistic (let us think of the daydreams of a solitary walker of Rousseau).
The second is the German direction, emerging under the influence of the Romantisme. The culture is the particular configuration of usual beliefs, material features, social organizations… it is a singular totality, an autonomous sphere incommensurable with other totalities. This more collective design is opposed to the French concepton.
In the Words and the Things , Michel Foucault defines the Anthropologie like the study of the relationship between the Nature and the Culture. Broadly one can apprehend this question by distinguishing anthropologies materialists and anthropologies Symboliste S.
Anthropologies materialists are interested in the structuring functions of the material life. The subjacent idea is that nature is determining basic: it is defined there in ethnocentric term, as being the engine of the social life. One finds there the anthropology Marxist of the years 1970 in France, for which nature is a raw data which can be suitable or transformed, and natural environment is a precondition of economic environment. One finds also the sociobiology and cultural ecology, between which one underlines certain a parallel since for both, the ultimate cause of the behaviors returns to the field of nature. In all the cases, for anthropologies materialists, the culture is a particular form of adaptation to a nature which would be a crucial factor everywhere and conditioning.
The Anthropologie S Symbolists are interested in the characters Symbolique S of the social life. They stress the aptitudes of the men to create a world significance and intentionalities depending on the rough determinations of nature.
In Structural anthropology 2, Lévi-Strauss says that anthropology is the discipline which thinks the relation between the Nature and the Culture. The natural dichotomy/raised culture, the natural opposition/culture suggests two possibilities. That is to say the Culture is what gives a direction to Nature (the culture imposes its significance on nature). That is to say nature determines the social reports/ratios (nature gives form to the culture).
Jean-Marc Rouvière, Short meditations on the creation of the world , Paris Harmattan, 2006.
Natural opposition/culture like analytical tool
The natural dichotomy/Culture used as analytical tool is partly derived from Claude Lévi-Strauss. It in particular used it as central operator to decode mythologies. This one was recognized relevant by the ethnologists of these Amerindian companies. The Mythologie recalls the construction of nature on an initial bottom of cultural lack of differentiation. (Thus in the Amerindian myths, at the beginning the animals and the men had same appearance). At Lévi-Strauss, the opposition, where it is relevant, i.e. in the myths, is only one way of putting a label on contrasts.
Cultural ecology gives a credit unlimited to nature. The structural anthropology, on this subject, does not oppose a form of idealism but also a naturalism, but a naturalism of principle. Lévi-Strauss varied forever in the idea that nature conditions the intellectual operations, nature thus becoming an empirical construction. The study naturalist must make it possible to include/understand the structure of the cultural groups. What interests Lévi-Strauss is to give an account of the way in which the spirit operates in cultural and geographical contexts distinct (ex: the Mythological ones). Mythology reveals in a purified form the operations of a spirit which is not condemned any more to put in order, but which can “play” with the operating rules of the thought.
Called into question of this dichotomy
The natural dichotomy/Culture is a recent Western cultural identity, and which does not make direction everywhere. This paradigm is not simply an analytical tool among others, it is also the keystone of modern epistemology. Thus Descola distinguishes four “modes from identification” which are the totemism, the animism, the analogism and the naturalism. Only the company naturalist (Western) produced this border between oneself and others through the idea of “nature”. Nature would be what does not concern the culture, which does not concern the distinctive features of the mankind, and of the human knowledge and know-how.
Its use as analytical tool in ethnology was sometimes fertile. However, and Philippe Descola showed it in Beyond nature and culture (2005), the idea of nature is foreign at many companies.
- "The men are nature becoming aware of it-même." Frantisek Kupka
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