David Rothenberg

  • "The peacock's tail," said Charles Darwin, "makes me sick." That's because the theory of evolution as adaptation can't explain why nature is so beautiful. It took the concept of sexual selection for Darwin to explain that, a process that has more to do with aesthetics than the practical. Survival of the Beautiful is a revolutionary new examination of the interplay of beauty, art, and culture in evolution. Taking inspiration from Darwin's observation that animals have a natural aesthetic sense, philosopher and musician David Rothenberg probes why animals, humans included, have innate appreciation for beauty-and why nature is, indeed, beautiful.

    Sexual selection may explain why animals desire, but it says very little about what they desire. Why will a bowerbird literally murder another bird to decorate its bower with the victim's blue feathers? Why do butterfly wings boast such brilliantly varied patterns? The beauty of nature is not arbitrary, even if random mutation has played a role in evolution. What can we learn from the amazing range of animal aesthetic behavior-about animals, and about ourselves?

    Readers who enjoyed the bestsellers The Art Instinct and The Mind's Eye will find Survival of the Beautiful an equally stimulating and profound exploration of art, science, and the creative impulse.

  • 'The peacock's tail makes me sick!' said Charles Darwin. That's because the theory of evolution as adaptation can't explain why nature is so beautiful. It took the concept of sexual selection for Darwin to explain that, a process that has more to do with aesthetic taste than adaptive fitness. Survival of the Beautiful is a revolutionary new examination of the interplay of beauty, art, and culture in evolution. Taking inspiration from Darwin's observation that animals have a natural aesthetic sense, philosopher and musician David Rothenberg probes why animals, humans included, have an innate appreciation for beauty - and why nature is, indeed, beautiful.

  • En fondant l'écologie profonde, Arne Næss a donné à l'écologie sa première expression philosophique.
    Revendiquant l'héritage de Spinoza et de Gandhi, Næss définit l'écologie profonde par opposition à une écologie «superficielle» qui n'aurait pour but que la préservation des ressources en vue du développement des pays riches. Replacer la nature au coeur de la pensée et au centre de nos valeurs : tel est le renversement auquel il invite la philosophie occidentale.
    Présentée par Luc Ferry comme une menace pour l'humanisme et la démocratie, l'écologie profonde commence - plus de 35 ans après sa fondation - à retenir l'attention des milieux intellectuels français.
    Dans ce savoureux dialogue autobiographique avec son complice David Rothenberg, Næss nous emmène dans quelques-uns de ses lieux de prédilection, et revient sur son parcours intellectuel et humain. De sa formation en philosophie à son amour de la montagne, en passant par ses activités de résistant, on refait avec lui le chemin qui l'a conduit à quitter l'université pour mettre en oeuvre cette "révolution copernicienne".

    "Ce n'est pas moi, c'est Rachel Carson qui a inventé l'écologie profonde".
    ARNE NAESS

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