Muecke, Stephen | from Multimedia Library Collection:

Muecke, Stephen. “Attachment.” Environmental Humanities 9, no. 1 (2017): 167-70. doi:10.1215/22011919-3829181.

Perhaps it is the security that modern urban societies have developed for their intellectuals that has given rise to their habits of detachment: critically distanced analysis, ironic commentary, skepticism that can veer quickly into cynicism. Our houses are more storm-proof than birds’ nests; wo don’t have to choose between eating and keeping up with the herd; and if a visiting anthropologist were to ask what we really care about, what we are most attached to, we would have to pause and think. It turns out we are deeply attached to all sorts of things, we just like to cultivate detachment from them. “The common root” for such positions, says Graham Harman, “lies in the modern supposition that subject and object are two alien things, and that the best course of action lies in disentangling one from the other as cleanly as possible.” The environmental humanities harbors a foundational critique of such dualism, for instance with Val Plumwood in the early nineties. (Text from author)

© Stephen Muecke 2017. Environmental Humanities is available online only and is published under a Creative Commons license (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0).