What if the values and behaviors of one culture are detrimental to the natural environment or the existence of other cultures? This paper addresses this question through a discussion of a growing denial of global warming among people of the United States of America. It is argued that the emergent Culture of Denial results from threats to a dominant Western ideology caused by challenges from the sustainability movement and the current global economic crisis. It is further argued that this dominant ideology of the so-called developed societies promotes and legitimizes cultural values that are unsustainable, thus harmful to the natural environment and other cultures. A case study of a lake community in United States demonstrates the power these cultural values have on the decision-making of the people in the community and the negative effects their decisions have had on the natural environment. The paper concludes by suggesting ways to end the Culture of Denial and change the ideology of unsustainability that threatens the natural and human environments of our shared ecosystem.
|Keywords:||Environmental Sustainability, Cultural Sustainability, Culture of Denial, Cultural Eutrophication|
Assitant Professor, Sociology Department, Castleton State College, Castleton, Vermont, USA
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