‘The Ecological Thought’

“Wildness areas are giant, abstract versions of the products hanging in mall windows.  Even when we’ve tried to preserve an enclave of safety from the ravages of the modern age, we’ve been getting it all wrong, on a more profound level…The more you know, the more entangled you realize you are, and the more open and ambiguous everything becomes…At its limit it [ecological thought] is a radical openness to everything.”

“The ecological thought is intrinsically dark, mysterious, and open, like an empty city square at dusk, a half open door, or an unresolved chord.  It is realistic, depressing, intimate, and alive and ironic all at the same time…democracy is well served by irony, because irony insists that there are other points of view that we must acknowledge.  Ugliness and horror are important, because they compel our compassionate coexistence to go beyond condescending pity.”

[Brandon Ballengée, DFA25 Promethéus, 2003/2007, Malamp series, Iris print]

[Nancy Davenport “Library“, from the campus series]

“There are no realms more ambiguous than those of language and art.  Camouflage, deception, and pure appearance are the stock in trade of life forms.  Language provides evidence of the reduplication and random mutation that make up the processes of evolution. The strange stranger is involved in a shifting zone of aesthetic seeming and illusion.  A rigorous thinking of the ecological thought compels us to let go of the unitary, virile ideas of Nature and the Natural that still prevail.”


“Ecology equals living minus Nature, plus consciousness…Our current categories are not set in stone.  Capitalism isn’t the Procrustean bed that stretches everything to fit it forever.”

“Like a virus, the ecological thought infects other systems of thinking and alters them from within, gradually disabling the incompatible ones.  The infection has only just begun.”

[Yucca Flat]

(A sampling of provocations from The Ecological Thought (prelude to Ecology without Nature). Source for top image)

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