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Environmental Thinking and Cultural Values: a Reflection on Environmental Globalisation and the Mediterranean Culture

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Europe and especially the Mediterranean are quite a good example, not only of the effects of the economic globalisation, but also of how different forms of globalisation have affected cultural and environmental values. The historical development in the understanding of the relationships between man and nature shows an important shift in Europe, and especially the Mediterranean from a first phase starting around the fourteenth century, dominated by appreciation of cultural landscapes shaped by man, to a different phase, starting in the late nineteenth century and continuing today, where natural landscapes became more important. In the second half of the twentieth century, the attention to sustainable development and environmental conservation favoured conservation of natural habitats and associated biodiversity, often criticising the cultural landscapes previously appreciated. These views, originating mostly in North America and in central Europe, have profoundly affected the way landscape is managed and perceived today, with a shift in attention from cultural landscapes towards natural landscapes. Today, there is an attempt to safeguard and make the most of these landscapes, but nature conservation poses difficulties, creating a conflict based on a different set of values for the management of these areas.
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Keywords: biodiversity; cultural landscapes; globalisation; nature conservation; values

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 October 2014

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  • The half-yearly journal Global Environment: A Journal of History and Natural and Social Sciences acts as a forum and echo chamber for ongoing studies on the environment and world history, with special focus on modern and contemporary topics. Our intent is to gather and stimulate scholarship that, despite a diversity of approaches and themes, shares an environmental perspective on world history in its various facets, including economic development, social relations, production government, and international relations.
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