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Planting the Seeds of the Future: Eschatological Environmentalism in the Time of the Anthropocene

Thompson Writing Program, Duke University, Durham, NC 27708, USA
Religions 2019, 10(2), 125; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel10020125
Received: 2 December 2018 / Revised: 11 February 2019 / Accepted: 18 February 2019 / Published: 20 February 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Verdant: Knowing Plants, Planted Relations, Religion in Place)
Drawing on ethnographic fieldwork, this essay examines how the local Jehovah’s Witnesses’ response to the current ecological crisis on the Galápagos Islands has produced a distinct form of religious environmentalism. Specifically, I argue that the Jehovah’s Witnesses’ vision of the ultimate future informs action rather than despair—contrary to what is often assumed about millenarian beliefs. This essay joins voices in Christian feminist and eco-theology interested in reclaiming eschatology for its imaginative valence. Yet, unlike invocations for hope that lack consideration of their viability, my ethnographic approach contributes to this literature with a view of the practical reverberations of eschatology. Further, current discussions about ecological unraveling, often couched around the concept of the Anthropocene, have reinforced expert-driven, techno-scientific measures that exclude other forms of knowledge production and practical interventions. If such worries continue to motivate a paradigm of conservation that exclude locals, my essay shows how the local Jehovah’s Witnesses promote a valuable alternative form of environmentalism, on the Galápagos and elsewhere. View Full-Text
Keywords: eco-theology; endemic plants; invasive species; urbanization; the Anthropocene; conservation; environmental anthropology; the Galápagos Islands; Ecuador eco-theology; endemic plants; invasive species; urbanization; the Anthropocene; conservation; environmental anthropology; the Galápagos Islands; Ecuador
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MDPI and ACS Style

Bocci, P. Planting the Seeds of the Future: Eschatological Environmentalism in the Time of the Anthropocene. Religions 2019, 10, 125. https://doi.org/10.3390/rel10020125

AMA Style

Bocci P. Planting the Seeds of the Future: Eschatological Environmentalism in the Time of the Anthropocene. Religions. 2019; 10(2):125. https://doi.org/10.3390/rel10020125

Chicago/Turabian Style

Bocci, Paolo. 2019. "Planting the Seeds of the Future: Eschatological Environmentalism in the Time of the Anthropocene" Religions 10, no. 2: 125. https://doi.org/10.3390/rel10020125

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