Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Trouble in paradise: Does nature worship harm the environment?

Date:
September 11, 2012
Source:
University of Chicago Press Journals
Summary:
Consumers nurture romantic ideas of nature by engaging in practices that are often harmful to the environment, according to a new study. Could eco-friendly products provide a solution?

Consumers nurture romantic ideas of nature by engaging in practices that are often harmful to the environment, according to a new study in the Journal of Consumer Research. Could eco-friendly products provide a solution?

"Nature is often considered the ideal place to escape from everyday life. Consumers enjoy romantic escapes from culture in contexts as diverse as surfing, tropical island holidays, and the Burning Man festival. But by viewing nature as simply the opposite of culture, consumers often expedite the destruction of the experiences of nature they desire most," write authors Robin Canniford (University of Melbourne) and Avi Shankar (University of Bath).

Consumers preserve romantic ideas of nature as an escape from urban life and culture by hiding or purging elements of culture and social tensions from their experiences of nature. Paradoxically, these actions can harm the environment and subject the experiences of nature to increasing legal and commercial regulation.

For example, although the Maldives are frequently considered an island paradise, tourists have left behind so much waste that entire islands are being swamped by trash that is polluting the crystal blue sea tourists travel so far to experience. On Australia's Gold Coast, violence against other surfers has become such a common method of alleviating crowded experiences of nature that police have been drafted in to patrol the perfect sandy beaches in order to control the violence. Boat charters and private resorts that limit the number of consumers at certain locations in order to preserve an unspoiled experience of nature have subject these experiences to increased regulation and commercialization.

However, consumers are also aware of the fragility of nature and seek to alleviate potential damage with increasingly ecologically friendly consumer technologies.

"Rather than seeking to merely hide the fact that nature and culture are interdependent, consumers seek to advance practices that leave nature as untouched as possible. Demand for eco-friendly products offers an opportunity for outdoor equipment manufacturers and tourism service providers to help consumers enjoy nature in less damaging ways," the authors conclude.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Chicago Press Journals. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Robin Canniford and Avi Shankar. Purifying Practices: How Consumers Assemble Romantic Experiences of Nature. Journal of Consumer Research, February 2013

Cite This Page:

University of Chicago Press Journals. "Trouble in paradise: Does nature worship harm the environment?." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 11 September 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120911125330.htm>.
University of Chicago Press Journals. (2012, September 11). Trouble in paradise: Does nature worship harm the environment?. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120911125330.htm
University of Chicago Press Journals. "Trouble in paradise: Does nature worship harm the environment?." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120911125330.htm (accessed October 21, 2014).

Share This



More Science & Society News

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Traditional Farming Methods Gaining Ground in Mali

Traditional Farming Methods Gaining Ground in Mali

AFP (Oct. 20, 2014) He is leading a one man agricultural revolution in Mali - Oumar Diatabe uses traditional farming methods to get the most out of his land and is teaching others across the country how to do the same. Duration: 01:44 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Your Birth Season Might Determine Your Temperament

Your Birth Season Might Determine Your Temperament

Newsy (Oct. 20, 2014) A new study says the season you're born in can determine your temperament — and one season has a surprising outcome. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Nigeria Beat Its Ebola Outbreak

How Nigeria Beat Its Ebola Outbreak

Newsy (Oct. 20, 2014) The World Health Organization has declared Nigeria free of Ebola. Health experts credit a bit of luck and the government's initial response. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Worries End for Dozens on U.S. Watch Lists

Ebola Worries End for Dozens on U.S. Watch Lists

Reuters - US Online Video (Oct. 20, 2014) Forty-three people who had contact with Thomas Eric Duncan, the first person diagnosed with Ebola in the U.S., were cleared overnight of twice-daily monitoring after 21 days of showing no symptoms. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Science & Society

Business & Industry

Education & Learning

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins