The University of Newcastle, Australia
Available in 2019

Course handbook


The course introduces students to the ideological causes of environmental destruction (despotism) and responses to them in the form of late twentieth century environmental philosophies such as: Native Ecology, Animal Liberation, The Land Ethic, Deep Ecology, Ecofeminism and Social Ecology. The examination of 'environmental' values and ethics is linked to a critical evaluation of contemporary social values and the idea of an ecologically sustainable society. The application of contemporary ethics to professional practice, experimentation and social action is critically considered.

Availability2019 Course Timetables


  • Semester 2 - 2019


  • Semester 2 - 2019

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the course students will be able to:

1. Critically evaluate the historical origins of destructive attitudes and practices toward the natural environment;

2. Examine the historical development of environmental philosophy in the twentieth and twenty first century;

3. Appreciate the role of environmental philosophy in evaluating attitudes toward the environment;

4. Assess the compatibility of human and environmental/ecological values;

5. Apply ideas in environmental philosophy to the management and design of social systems;

6. Apply environmental ethics and values to relevant areas in science and technology.


This course covers material relevant to environmental ethics. Topics include:

The origins of despotic attitudes toward the environment:

  • Religions
  • Patriarchy
  • Science and Technology
  • Economic Growth and Progress

Responses to the above in the form of environmental philosophies:

  • Native Ecology
  • Animal Liberation
  • The Land Ethic and Gaia
  • Deep Ecology
  • Eco-Feminism
  • Social Ecology
  • An Environmental Ethic for the 21st Century.


This course replaces ENVS1020. If you have successfully completed ENVS1020 you cannot enrol in this course.

Assessment items

Written Assignment: Precis

Formal Examination: Examination: Formal

Quiz: Online Quiz

Journal: Reflective Journal

Contact hours

Callaghan and Ourimbah


Face to Face On Campus 1 hour(s) per Week for Full Term


Face to Face On Campus 1 hour(s) per Week for Full Term