Ecologies of Justice: Christian Environmental Ethics and Sustainable Communities

Summer course with Dr. Andrew R. H. Thompson

June 6-24, 2016

The University of the South
Sewanee, TN, USA

The ecological challenges facing communities today are urgent and unprecedented, and demand action from the Church. Responses to environmental crises have come from theology, philosophy, and community activism, and incorporate everything from practical efforts to reform political systems to fundamental questions about humanity’s place in the world. This course will survey ethical responses to environmental problems with a focus on local action. We will spend time on the University’s 13,000-acre domain, hear from activists and residents of an intentional sustainable community, and get our hands dirty on the university farm. A final essay will seek to apply the insights gleaned to sustainability and environmental justice on a parish level.

Required reading:

Willis J. Jenkins, The Future of Ethics: Sustainability, Social Justice, and Religious Creativity (Georgetown, 2014).

James Gustafson, A Sense of the Divine: The Natural Environment from a Theocentric Perspective (Pilgrim Press, 1994).

Wendell Berry, Our Only World: Ten Essays (Counterpoint, 2015).

David Haskell, The Forest Unseen: A Year's Watch in Nature (Penguin Press, 2013).

Dr. Andrew R. H. Thompson is the Assistant Director of the Center for Religion and Environment at Sewanee and postdoctoral fellow in environmental ethics at the School of Theology. Thompson earned his Ph.D. in Religion from Yale University, and his M.A.R. from Yale Divinity School. He also holds a B.A. in Music Performance from Duquesne University. His book, All My Holy Mountain: A Christian Ethical Response to Mountaintop Removal Coal Mining, applies Christian social ethics to environmental justice activism in Appalachia. He has also written on mission and on religion and place, and has taught ethics, philosophy, and world religions. Contact: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

Auditors are welcome.