The Death of Nature: Women, Ecology, and the Scientific Revolution

The Death of Nature Women Ecology and the Scientific Revolution An examination of the Scientific Revolution that shows how the mechanistic world view of modern science has sanctioned the exploitation of nature unrestrained commercial expansion and a new socioeco

  • Title: The Death of Nature: Women, Ecology, and the Scientific Revolution
  • Author: Carolyn Merchant
  • ISBN: 9780062505958
  • Page: 382
  • Format: Paperback
  • An examination of the Scientific Revolution that shows how the mechanistic world view of modern science has sanctioned the exploitation of nature, unrestrained commercial expansion, and a new socioeconomic order that subordinates women.
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      Posted by:Carolyn Merchant
      Published :2019-04-19T13:07:25+00:00

    825 Comment

    • Gea says:

      In her 1980 book, The Death of Nature, Carolyn Merchant developed a feminist theory through the lens of the ecology movement. She explained how the pre-scientific world not only maintained a sense of chivalry and respect toward nature, but also associated feminine and life-giving characteristics to nature. Prior to the works of the founding ‘fathers’ of modern science, such as Bacon and Descartes, the values and images associated with women and nature were revered; however, as the worldview [...]

    • Bill O'driscoll says:

      Merchant is an historian of science, and her book studies how humankind's relationship with the natural world changed, especially over the past six centuries. Basically, we went from regarding the world as a living organism -- a "mother" -- to viewing nature as a machine ("natural resources"). Fascinating stuff -- not WHAT we think, exactly, but why we think as we do. Merchant is a good writer, if a little academic, when she stays on topic, but has an annoying tendency to digress. Still, this is [...]

    • Karen says:

      Dense, dully written with a clear vendetta against men. Good information I suppose, but I'd rather shoot myself before re-reading this book!! It was so bad that I added my own review on the back cover at the time I finished it "Pain in the ass to read, this book marked the death of my soul!"

    • Christy says:

      This book was quite simply not what I expected.If you're looking for a history of conceptions of nature explored from a feminist and environmentalist perspective, this book is great; if, however, you are looking for a more theoretical approach to the interconnections between women and nature (as the subtitle seems to promise), this book isn't quite what you're looking for. It does definitely deal with those interconnections and gives lots of specific examples of how women and nature have been br [...]

    • Jane says:

      I'm not quite sure what I expected, but it certainly wasn't this extremely dull and slightly preachy book. I consider myself an environmentalist but I wouldn't rate this as one.Admittedly, I did not read this in it's entirety because it was extremely ponderous in many sections. I ended up jumping chapters and skimming through bits and pieces. From what I gathered, Merchant seems extremely resentful of science, she complains repeatedly that science has reduced nature to "mechanistic" matter. Scie [...]

    • Candy Wood says:

      First published in 1980, The Death of Nature represents the conjunction of the women's rights movement (which Merchant dates from the publication of The Feminine Mystique in 1963) and the ecology movement, nationally recognized in the U.S. by Earth Day 1970. Merchant focuses primarily on Europe from 1500 to 1700, tracing the shift from the view of nature as organism that lasted into the Middle Ages to the view of nature as machine that came out of the Scientific Revolution. Part of her argument [...]

    • Bri says:

      Tedious is the only word I can think of to describe this book. There are a few, brief paragraphs, that I actually enjoyed, but for the most part I found myself reading multiple pages without remembering a single word I'd read. She makes a few valid points, but has an annoying tendency to oversimplify some very complicated issues.

    • Nick Mather says:

      This is an important book that details the shift from an organic worldview to a mechanistic one, which is one based on oppression towards women and nature. Mercant's writing does leave something to be desired, but the content of her ideas is what is most important. The history of science and worldview that she traces here is essential in understanding our current ecological condition.

    • Stan says:

      Canonical imo. Merchant disassembles the notion of "objectivity," an in so doing identifies it with the unique male supremacist character of the Enlightenment/post-Enlightenment.

    • Toon Pepermans says:

      There's a lot of interesting information here, but the writing style is remarkably uninspired.

    • Marcy Goodfleisch says:

      Too bad a 'no stars' rating isn't possible here. Merchant's book attempts to tie mankind's erosion of natural resources and the damage to our environment to the history of discrimination and mistreatment of women. Unfortunately, her connection is based on thin and superficial assumptions that because situation "A" happened throughout time, and situation "B" also happened, they must be connected. Not recommended at all. Don't waste your time.

    • Bobbo says:

      I thought this book was great. Basically the argument is that during the scientific revolution people began to view nature in terms of mechanical forces. This replaced the idea of nature as a feminine and womanly. I really liked it, a bit too "man bashy" (if that is a word) at times, but still really good.

    • Maddy says:

      Compelling arguments about gender and ecology, but out of date (written in the 80s). Excellent read infused with Marxist, 2nd-wave feminist, and environmentalist thought.

    • Nolan Gray says:

      Dull, didactic, and dogmatic.

    • Karim says:

      lesbian separatist environmental history

    • Jordan says:

      I only rate this book a three because I was able to get tons of quotes from it for papers.

    • Zoë says:

      A revolutionary book for how society viewed women and nature. But, you need to be committed.

    • Tony says:

      a pretty good synthesis of the hostory of science with ecofeminism. I still weave this stuff into my courses. her later work is not nearly as good as this.

    • Ioana Fotache says:

      5 stars for the research, but daaaaamn is her writing style difficult to trudge through.

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