Joel Kovel’s book The Enemy of Nature presents a unity of red and green, socialist and environmental respectively, critiques of capitalism. Split into three sections, Kovel takes us through capitalisms responsibility for eco-catastrophe, domination of nature and critiques of eco-socialism and possible future paths, inextricably linking domination of nature and domination of labour as both under the heavy foot of capitalism. Presented as a “cold-blooded killer” (Kovel 2007 p6), the horror of the capitalist system and its effect on the ecological stability of our planet in its entirety is of such all-encompassing magnitude that it causes people to resist practical and radical intervention. An intervention that is desperately needed in order to divert impending global ecological catastrophe. An apathy is produced by the sheer weight of the problem, a condition even Kovel admits almost being tempted by (ibid. pp14-23). However, as Kovel argues, there is too much worth fighting for, a whole world, literally, in our hands to save. Thus Kovel dispels the myth that nature is ‘other’ to human kind and he critiques the illusion of our ownership of the Earth to state that we, and our fates, are utterly intertwined with and as a part of nature (ibid. p14). Therefore we are a victim of our own persecution of nature via the advancement and sustaining of capitalism. He then takes the argument one step further by marking the difference between capital as ecodestructive and as being anti-ecological, as capital “violates the whole sense of the universe, not just parts of nature” (ibid. p95).
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