Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Stephen Gardiner

Stephen Gardiner is Associate Professor in the Department of Philosophy and the Program on Values in Society, University of Washington, Seattle.

His new book is A Perfect Moral Storm: The Ethical Tragedy of Climate Change.

Gardiner's response to my recent query about what he has been reading:
I've recently been reading Anthony Appiah's book: The Honor Code: Why Moral Revolutions Happen. The subtitle indicates that this is an important topic, and Appiah treats it through examining central cases such as the end of dueling, footbinding, and the transatlantic slave trade. His thesis that it is the role played by honor that made the difference is an interesting and engaging one, partly because it brings attention to a largely dismissed topic in contemporary life and philosophy. I'm particularly intrigued by the claim that it is often the fact that certain behaviors come to seem "ridiculous" to those engaged in them as well as to others that makes the difference. What would help to make some of our (bad) climate behavior seem ridiculous, I wonder?

I'm also rereading my favorite Jane Austen novel, Persuasion (for the umpteenth time). Since there is a chapter on Sense and Sensibility in my current book on climate, I'm wondering whether I can get Persuasion into the next one. I haven't yet figured that out, but I'm working on it ...
Learn more about A Perfect Moral Storm at the Oxford University Press website.

The Page 99 Test: A Perfect Moral Storm.

--Marshal Zeringue