BIVALENT ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE AND THE CULTURE OF POVERTY

Author: 

Professor Robert Melchior Figueroa

Can a single analytical theory reconcile environmental justices’ conflicting paradigms of redistribution, which focuses on socio-economic status, and recognition, which focuses on historical and present institutional racial discrimination? Robert Melchior Figueroa argues that a bivalent conception of environmental justice can unify these two the two conflicting paradigms. This new conception of environmental justice allows us to better study the effects of environmental values and practices on the ways we treat one another. By focusing on the bivalent nature of environmental justice, theorists avoid trivializing the effects of historical and present institutional discrimination against minorities, which are often overlooked by theorists who focus completely upon socio-economic issues. This bivalent approach encourages theorists to incorporate cultural, economic, and locational relations into the study of our environments, broadening the environmental justice debate to reach more issues than just the fair distribution of environmental burdens and benefits. View More