"The Emotional Heart of Environmental Virtues"
November 3, 2021| 12:00 - 1:00 PM CST
Meeting ID: 949 0968 7163
Cheryl Hall, Ph.D.
Associate Professor and Associate Director, School of Interdisciplinary Studies
Univeristy of South Florida
Presentation Abstract : What would it take for those of us in advanced industrialized societies to live more sustainably? Beyond changes in political and economic systems, material design and infrastructure, and technology, many people argue that we need to cultivate various “environmental virtues” to support greener ways of life. Such virtues include respect for the web of life, gratitude, responsibility, stewardship, humility, moderation, hope, patience, practical wisdom, cooperation, and ecocitizenship, among many others. While these environmental virtues are often justified quite persuasively, though, little attention has been paid to their emotional components. I argue that environmental virtues, like all virtues, depend not only on particular ways of emotionally engaging with oneself and the world but on the advanced skills in working with emotions required to foster those ways of engaging. If we wish to encourage environmental virtues, then, we should help people understand the emotional aspects involved in cultivating and sustaining such virtues and in developing emotional skills more generally.
About Dr. Cheryl Hall: Cheryl Hall is Associate Professor and Associate Director in the School of Interdisciplinary Global Studies at the University of South Florida. She is a political theorist with specialties in environmental political theory, feminist theory, and emotion in politics. Her research focuses on the roles that human capacities, concepts, and practices play in encouraging or discouraging more just and sustainable ways of life. She is especially interested in questions of how to encourage political action on climate change by cultivating the emotional resources necessary to sustain cultural attention to the challenge. Her publications include The Trouble With Passion: Political Theory Beyond the Reign of Reason, The Oxford Handbook of Environmental Political Theory (co-edited), “What Will it Mean to Be Green? Envisioning Positive Possibilities Without Dismissing Loss,” “Framing and Nudging for a Greener Future,” “Caring to Be Green: The Importance of Love for Environmental Integrity,” and “The Emotional Heart of Environmental Virtues.”