This paper aims to set out an analysis of Gregory Bateson's thought about the relations between parts and wholes, between separateness and togetherness in order to illuminate the kind of answers Bateson proposed to the contemporary ecological dilemma.
It roughly situates discourses of the “enchantment” of nature on the side of togetherness and discourses of scientific disenchantment on the side of togetherness.
The essay looks at Bateson's discovery that neither separateness nor togetherness can ever be thought of without the other as an indication of the limits of both disenchantment and enchantment, and it suggests that awareness of these limits enables ecological insight.
The essay proposes a broad summary of a general problem in Gregory Bateson's epistemology and shows how it emerges in political, social and ecological space.
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