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- Revitalization of the Commons
As the commons are understood as the totality of the culture and natural systems that are freely available to all the members of the community, the process of revitalization involves both the strengthening of local decision making in ways that ensures the continuation of these practices as well as reclaiming aspects of the commons that previously had been enclosed. The latter may take the form of renewing traditional agricultural practices that do not rely upon genetically engineered seeds and industrial chemicals, restoring wetlands, promoting community-centered arts that provide an alternative to the mass entertainment industry, the recovery of traditional knowledge and practices connected with the use of medicinal plants, the strengthening of the ties between local producers and consumers, the development of barter and local currency systems, and so forth. The revitalization of the commons is understood here as taking different forms of cultural expression and would be dependent upon local knowledge of place and sustainable practices.
- Root Metaphors
The languaging processes carry forward past ways of thinking that are based on assumptions unique to the culture; these deeply held and generally taken-for-granted assumptions, which are derived from the culture’s mythopoetic narratives and powerful evocative experiences, are encoded in the words that called root metaphors; the root metaphors of a culture provide the interpretative frameworks that survive over many generations and influence values, approaches to problem solving and activities in a wide range of daily life; the root metaphors, as meta-cognitive schemata, also influences the silences as well as what will be marginalized; the dominant root metaphors in the West that have contributed to an ecologically destructive culture include mechanism, a linear interpretation of progress, anthropocentrism, Cartesian individualism, patriarchy, and, now, evolution as a way of explaining which cultures wills survive; these root metaphors reproduce the pre-ecological ways of thinking, and are also basic to the continued expansion of the industrial culture.; the root metaphor that serves as an interpretive framework for addressing ecojustice issues is ecology—which highlights awareness of relationships and interdependencies with the commons; as a root metaphor, ecology locates the individual as a participant within the ecological systems that we are calling the commons, which is profoundly different from how an anthropocentric root metaphor (interpretative framework) leads to thinking of oneself as an observer, a person who appropriates the environment for personal gain, or as totally indifferent to the changes occurring in the environment.
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