• Arnold Berleant deposited The Aesthetics of the Human Environment on Humanities Commons 4 years, 6 months ago

    The interest in environmental aesthetic that politicians and con¬servationists have recently been showing seems clear in its intent. It appears to be a belated yet important effort to save the values of our natural world from final exploitation and the irrevocable disfigurement and 1088 that must follow. If it is to result in more than a program for removing billboards and hiding junkyards, this concern with environment should be seen as a cue for the artist and the aesthetician to develop ima¬ges, concepts, and principles that will articulate and rationalize the con¬victions that have produced these efforts. It may, however, seem as though to do this requires an act of philosophical creation ex nihilo, for philosophers have never devoted much attention to such questions, and with the exception of a few thinkers like Kant, Ruskin, and Santayana, they have indeed ignored the aesthetics of nature altogether. At most, aesthetics has turned to nature for inspiration or as a model for emulation, but never as an occasion for perceptual experience analogous to the expe¬rience of art.