Gaia’s Gift, the second of Anne Primavesi’s explorations of human relationships with the earth, asks that we complete the ideological revolution set in motion by Copernicus and Darwin concerning human importancene. They challenged the notion of our God-given centrality within the universe and within earth’s evolutionary history. Yet as our continuing exploitation of earth’s resources and species demonstrates, we remain wedded to the theological assumption that these are there for our sole use and benefit. Now James Lovelock’s scientific understanding of the existential reality of Gaia’s gift of life again raises the question of our proper place within the universe. It turns us decisively towards an understanding of ourselves as dependent on, rather than in control of, the whole earth community.
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