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Berkshire Encyclopedia of Sustainability: Vol.1 The Spirit of Sustainability
by Willis Jenkins (Author, Editor)
The Sprit of Sustainability, Volume 1 of the ten-volume Berkshire Encyclopedia of Sustainability, helps readers navigate the moral worlds and ethical concepts, and social and religious practices related to sustainability. In collaboration with the Forum on Religion and Ecology, an established network of leading scholars, it explores a wide range of topics and perspectives, from the promise and problems of approaching sustainability through global and indigenous religions, to major theories in philosophy and environmental ethics, and professional practices and social movements. This volume presents the various goals of sustainability - ecological integrity, economic health, human dignity, fairness to the future, and social justice - and provides a framework for reasoning through many interrelated environmental challenges for both current and future generations.
From School Library Journal
Grade 9 Up¡ªThe stated goal of this series is to provide a resource in which information seekers can find everything they need to know about environmental sustainability. Students expecting only scientific concepts may be puzzled to find that the encyclopedia's first volume (the nine others will be published individually through April 2011) focuses on moral issues. Nonetheless, the introduction offers convincing justification for presenting the ethical, religious, and philosophical aspects of sustainability, noting that, for many, a discussion of Earth's environment is incomplete without addressing the spiritual. The 147 alphabetically arranged articles cover world religions, concepts ("Sin and Evil," "Racism," "Nonviolence"), and ecological movements. With the charge to inform and to represent multiple perspectives, the writers of this thoughtfully produced volume stay on topic and handily present the relationship between their subject and the overall concept of sustainability. Further-reading lists conclude each entry. The remaining volumes will cover the economics, law, and science of sustainability as well as assessments of geographical locations. An e-version of the set will be available after all of the volumes are in print¡ªJoanna K. Fabicon, Los Angeles Public Library
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
*Starred Review* With The Spirit of Sustainability, Berkshire has launched Berkshire Encyclopedia of Sustainability, which will comprise 10 volumes when it is completed. Future volumes will cover business, law, natural resources, and geographic regions, among other topics. As stated in the ¡°Publisher¡¯s Note,¡± although there is other good reference material on the environment, much of it is focused on the problems. Berkshire Encyclopedia of Sustainability, on the other hand, is ¡°a project about solutions.¡± Developed under the auspices of the Forum on Religion and Ecology at Yale University, The Spirit of Sustainability examines sustainability as a ¡°moral challenge.¡± More than 110 international and primarily academic contributors wrote the 147 A¨CZ entries, which range from 1 to 5 pages in length. A number of entries are those one would expect to see in an encyclopedia on environmental concerns, such as Agriculture, Climate change, and Water. However, with the goal of ¡°introducing the question of sustainability in multiple moral perspectives,¡± there are also entries for concepts such as Community, Justice, and Sin and evil as well as various spiritual and theological frameworks, from Christianity¡ªMainline Protestant and Hinduism to indigenous traditions in Africa, Asia, and elsewhere. Each entry includes a brief introductory summary and a further-reading list, and many entries also include sidebars containing primary source material. Berkshire publications have a high standard of design, and this one is no exception. Like last year¡¯s Berkshire Encyclopedia of China, The Spirit of Sustainability incorporates graphic elements supporting its theme. Twenty-one photographic images, one for each alphabetical grouping, introduce the entries, and scientific illustrations, many from the Library of Congress and the New York Public Library, are scattered throughout. The layout is intended to make photocopying easy, and teachers are encouraged to make up to 10 copies of no more than two articles for use in a single class or program. This is a nice feature for high-school classrooms, but much of the content is too academic for that audience. The complementary Encyclopedia of Environmental Ethics and Philosophy (2008) covers some of the same topics but takes a more interdisciplinary approach. The Spirit of Sustainability is an important contribution, especially as part of a larger whole, and is essential for academic and large public libraries with collections on the environment. As a stand-alone, it would be a good choice for religion collections as well. Also available as an e-book. --Mary Ellen Quinn
Meghan J. Clark is an Assistant Professor of Theology and Religious Studies at St. John's University (NY). Her primary research area is Catholic social thought, with a special interest in human rights, solidarity and global health/development. She has published articles in Political Theology, Heythrop Journal, Vincentian Heritage Journal and the Journal of Catholic Social Thought. She is currently a fellow of the Institute for Policy Research and Catholic Studies at Catholic University of America. From 2010-2013, Dr. Clark served as a consultant to the Domestic Justice and Human Development Committee of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.
In addition, she is a contributing member of www.catholicmoraltheology.com and an active member of the Society of Christian Ethics and Catholic Theological Society of America. Meghan received her undergraduate degree from Fordham University in philosophy and theology and her doctorate in Theological ethics from Boston College under the supervision of David Hollenbach, S.J.
Areas of Specialization: Catholic social teaching, social ethics, medical ethics, human rights, solidarity