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Title page for ETD etd-04052006-101234

Type of Document Dissertation
Author Borchers, Scott
Author's Email Address scott.m.borchers@vanderbilt.edu
URN etd-04052006-101234
Title Hegel's Logic and Global Climate Change
Degree PhD
Department Philosophy
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
John Lachs Committee Chair
David Wood Committee Member
Dieter Sevin Committee Member
Gregg Horowitz Committee Member
Robert Ehman Committee Member
  • Science of Logic
  • Hegel
  • climate change
Date of Defense 2006-03-29
Availability unrestricted
The goal of my dissertation is to bring the exacting account of relations found in Hegel's Science of Logic down to earth by bringing it to bear on global climate change. Chapter by chapter, I explain the complicated, abstract progression of the Logic through concrete examples from global climate change. I render this text more intelligible through clear, empirical illustrations, and bring complex philosophical ideas to life in a visceral, level-headed manner.

Not only do I show that global climate change can help us better understand Hegel's Science of Logic, I also show how Hegel's Logic helps us address climate change. I demonstrate how the philosophical concepts in the Science of Logic provide a framework for addressing features of climate change such as understanding how it works, assessing its risks, mitigating its impacts, and exploring policy options.

Climate change is also an ethical issue, so I endorse the following moral principle: human beings and other animals ought not to suffer and to die unnecessarily. "Unnecessarily" means when reasonable measures can be taken to prevent or ameliorate suffering and death. I argue that, since reasonable measures are available for mitigating climate change, there is no ethical justification for not preventing the risks posed by global warming.

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