The Relationship between (Protestant) Christianity and the Environment is Ambivalent

In: Philosophia Reformata
View More View Less
  • 1 Netherlands

Login via Institution

Purchase instant access (PDF download and unlimited online access):

€25.00$30.00

In his contribution to this special issue, Michael Northcott argues that there is a historic association between Protestant cultures and the origins of environmentalism. It seems to me, however, that the connection between Protestantism and environmentalism is more complicated and ambivalent than the positive relation he highlights. In this paper, I will problematize that relation on the basis of various theoretical and empirical contributions in the literature on religion and environmentalism. Different positions in this regard within Protestantism will be identified and related to theological positions and the historic impact of Protestantism on culture. In the final section, the impact of environmental degradation on the (global) poor will be highlighted, which leads to the identification of a tension between an orthodox/evangelical Protestant stance towards the poor and towards the environment.

  • Bellah R.N. (2000). Flaws in the Protestant Code. Some Religious Sources of America’s Troubles. Ethical Perspectives 7, pp. 288299.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Bhagwat S.A. , Ormsby A.A. , and Rutte C. (2011). The Role of Religion in Linking Conservation and Development: Challenges and Opportunities. Journal for the Study of Religion, Nature and Culture 5 (1), pp. 3960. DOI 10.1558/jsrnc.v5i1.39.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Blauw Research (2014). Rechtvaardigheid: waarom doen we dat (niet)? Resultaten Micha monitor 2014. http://www.michanederland.nl/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/2e-Micha-Monitor-2014.pdf.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Delacroix J. , and Nielsen F. (2001). The Beloved Myth: Protestantism and the Rise of Industrial Capitalism in Nineteenth-Century Europe. Social Forces 80 (2), pp. 509553. http://www.jstor.org/stable/2675588.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Desvaux M. (2005–2010). A Synopsis of Clive Ponting’s “A Green History of the World.” Optimum Population Trust Journal 510. http://www.populationmatters.org/wp-content/uploads/green_history.pdf.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Fox J. (2001). Religion as an Overlooked Element in International Relations. International Studies Review 3 (3), pp. 5373.

  • Graafland J. , and De Jager S. (2015). Sociaal verantwoorde consumptie en levensovertuiging. Radix 41 (3), pp. 222230.

  • Grier R. (1997). The Effect of Religion on Economic Development: A Cross National Study of 63 Former Colonies. Kyklos 50–Fasc. 1, pp. 4762. http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/1467-6435.00003/epdf.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Grizzle R.E. , and Barrett C.B. (1998). The One Body of Christian Environmentalism. Zygon 33, pp. 233253.

  • Hayes A. , and Nadkarni M.V. , eds. (2001). Poverty, Environment and Development: Studies of Four Countries in the Asia Pacific Region . Bangkok: UNESCO PROAP. http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0012/001219/121999e.pdf.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Heltzel P.G. (2010). The World House: Prophetic Protestantism and the Struggle for Environmental Justice. Union Seminary Quarterly Review 63 (1–2), pp. 2641.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Inglehart R. , and Baker W.E. (2000). Modernization, Cultural Change and the Persistence of Traditional Values. American Sociological Review 65 (1), pp. 1951.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Jansen P. , Van der Stoep J. , Keulartz J. , and Jochemsen H. (2016). In Search of Religious Elements in the Dutch Nature Policy. Journal for the Study of Religion, Nature and Culture 10 (1), pp. 91116. DOI 10.1558/jsrnc.v10i1.21368.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Jansen P. , Van der Stoep J. , Keulartz J. , and Jochemsen H. (2017). Wistful Wilderness: Communication about “New” Nature in the Netherlands. Journal of Environmental Policy & Planning 19 (2), pp. 197213. http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/1523908X.2016.1198254.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Kosmus M. , Renner I. , and Ullrich S. (2012). Integrating Ecosystem Services into Development Planning. A Stepwise Approach for Practitioners Based on the TEEB Approach. Eschborn: Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Mager D. , and Foekema H. (2012). Trouw geven, eerlijk leven. In: Jochemsen H. , ed., Van geven naar delen. Geef- en leefgedrag van christenen in Nederland, Maastricht: Shaker, pp. 736.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (2005). Ecosystems and Human Well-being: Biodiversity Synthesis. Washington: World Resources Institute. http://www.millenniumassessment.org/documents/document.354.aspx.pdf.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Nasreen M. , Hossain K.M. , and Kundu D.K. (2006). The Interrelationship between Poverty, Environment and Sustainable Development in Bangladesh: An Overview. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/238622968_The_Interrelationship_between_Poverty_Environment_and_Sustainable_Development_in_Bangladesh_An_Overview.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Nwagbara E. , Abia, R.P, Uyang F.A. , and Ejeje J.A. (2012). Poverty, Environmental Degradation, and Sustainable Development: A Discourse. Global Journal of Human Social Science. Sociology, Economics & Political Science 12 (11). https://globaljournals.org/GJHSS_Volume12/1-Poverty-Environmental-Degradation.pdf.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Reardon T. , and Vosti S.A. (1995). Links between Rural Poverty and the Environment in Developing Countries: Asset Categories and Investment Poverty. World Development 23 (9), pp. 14951506.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Selinger L. (2004). The Forgotten Factor: The Uneasy Relationship between Religion and Development. Social Compass 51, pp. 523543. DOI 10.1177/0037768604047872.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Stetzer E. (2013). New Research on Protestant Pastors’ Views of the Environment. Christianity Today, April 16. http://www.christianitytoday.com/edstetzer/2013/april/new-research-on-protestant-pastors-views-of-environment.html.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Vonk M. (2011). Sustainability and Quality of Life. A Study on the Religious Worldviews, Values and Environmental Impact of Amish, Hutterite, Franciscan and Benedictine Communities. PhD dissertation, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. https://research.vu.nl/ws/portalfiles/portal/3051600.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Woodberry R.D. (2012). The Missionary Roots of Liberal Democracy. American Political Science Review 106, pp. 244274.

Content Metrics

All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 440 173 17
Full Text Views 194 26 2
PDF Downloads 35 12 1