AuthorMaher, Robert Joseph Daniel
AdvisorJacobs, Scott C.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThis study examines the logic of extreme contemporary North American environmental rhetoric from the perspective of a normative pragmatic approach to argumentation. As such, explicit normative standards for reasonable deliberative discourse serve as the epistemic grounds for a critical evaluation of a type of argumentation that is frequently relied upon by key members of extremely competitive interest groups during actual contemporary environmental policy disputes. The analysis reveals that the inferential framework and interpretive assumptions inherent in radical environmental arguments are embedded in specifiable tapestries of symbolic communication that are without grounds in absolute truth. Nonetheless, these predominantly narrative tapestries address what many people believe to be their proper role and place in the universe and are frequently implicated in chains of social and cognitive consequences that have significant bearing on American environmental policy deliberation and decision making processes. In this respect, it is argued that radical environmental argumentation is not fundamentally different than mainstream environmental argumentation. It is also argued that radical environmental arguments are as deserving of policy makers' time and consideration as any environmental argument, especially during environmental policy deliberation and decision making processes.
Degree ProgramGraduate College