Erle Ellis, “Neither Good Nor Bad”


1.      The Anthropocene (emergence of humanity as a global force of nature) is here to stay

         a.      Political prediction or conceptual claim?

         b.      Why can’t we rewild nature?

2.      “We are changing the way the entire planet functions”

         a.      What planetary functions are we changing and which are we not?

3.      Humanity’s leap to a new level of planetary importance is an amazing opportunity

         a.      We should celebrate the anthropocene?

         b.      Its like getting a job promotion? Now you can use all your good ideas for how to run the operation?

4.      “We are as gods and might as well get good at it”

5.      “Whatever the future holds will ultimately be up to all of us”

         a.      In what sense is this true? And in what sense not? We certainly have the power to destroy pieces of nature.....

6.      “We used to depend on nature to care for us. Now it’s entirely the other way around”

         a.      While it is true that some pieces of nature depend on us–some classic ecosystems and some species we are about to drive extinct–nature does not need us and we need nature like crazy

Questions for Ellis, “Neither Good nor Bad”

1.      Is the Anthropocene permanent? Why or why not?

2.      How significant is human impact on the planet? Are “we changing the way the entire planet functions?”

3.      Is the Anthropocene a positive opportunity

4.      Has humanity become god like? Is so in what ways?

5.      Will humans alone determine what the future is like?

6.      Does nature depend on us?