Sunday, August 26, 2018

Romantic reverence for wild nature paradoxically disserved the natural world, idealizing nature to the point of obscuring much of its reality. When Romantic environmentalism did not own up to the ways that law and technology produce both the nature we encounter and the ways we encounter it, its ideal of pristine, wild nature grew narrower. This narrowing encouraged the Romantic habit of disregarding, even disdaining, places that do not meet high standards of sublimity and inspiration, segregating the natural world into a few cathedrals and vast tracts of profane land, with most of human life relegated to the profane regions.

--Jedediah Purdy