The second half of Nature was very similar to the rest of the book. He went in-depth with the landscape of nature, reassessment of Nature, the disunited colors of Nature, and the future of Nature. Coates made interesting points, but I thought he would ended the book differently. It didn’t right for me. It felt weird. Ideas were similar, and he was quoting multiple people with similar or strikingly different ideas.
- Coates discussed about in the 18th century and the development of parks and gardens. “The privatization of nature was particularly evident in the conversion of woodland in hunting estates (115). With gaming laws becoming a thing, private land became important, and the establishment of parks began to increase.
- Francis Bacon made an interesting point about gardens. Bacon considered gardens the greatest refreshment of the spirits of man (116). Gardens were places where people can escape to the wildlife since that was the closest thing to Nature for them. I agree with that today with the increase of urbanization. It’s hard to enjoy the wildlife in areas where there is no space. People enjoy gardening and allotting space in their yard to build luxurious gardens.
- Francis Fukuyama believed that the definitive triumph of capitalism and liberal democracy signaled the end point of mankind’s ideological evolution. With the increase importance of the economy and urbanization, it has brought the importance of nature to a decline. It has brought more unprecedented disasters like a nuclear winter or global warming (173).
- Coates also discussed about the relationship between humans and animals. He talks the difference between communication and language, how animals have similar behaviors to humans. Coates discussed how bears learn to hunt from their parents, and buffalo calves get support from their aunt and uncle. Humans have similar relationships in that we learn from our parents basic necessities that we use in life. We are very similar to animals and we process information in similar ways.
- Another thing that struck me was the biotechnology that humans are doing. He mentions the cloning of sheep (Dolly), and using pigs to help grow human organs (178). He talked about how humans are playing God, and its becoming a norm. He also talks about making it ok to have genetically engineered plants which are not grown from nature. It has become more popular of using nature to help sustain the humans. Cloning, modifying plants, and using animals to grow organs are not of God’s creation.
Overall, the book was interesting. It was great to get an insight of the history of Nature. We don’t learn about the history, but so many people throughout time have so many insights on how we perceive nature. Peter Coates makes some valid points, and did a great job collecting all of this information. I’m glad I had an opportunity to read this book.