A Reading of the conception of man in Hans Jonas’ works: Between Nature and Responsibility. An Environmental Ethics Approach
Article [Version of Record]
Is part ofÉthique et Économique / Ethics and Economics ; vol. 2, no 2
Publisher(s)Centre de recherche en éthique de l'Université de Montréal
Hans Jonas is considered one of the principal leaders of the ecological doctrine that fights against the hegemony of technical power upon society. We will study the conception of man in Jonas’ ideology through the lens of nature and of responsibility. He brandishes the specter of disaster (“heuristics of fear”) as a guard against technological excesses. He appeals to a prospective, universal and categorical responsibility to protect nature and to save future generations. Jonas considers responsibility as a method of anticipating the threat to that which is vulnerable, ephemeral, and perishable. Thus, the responsibility that Jonas decrees implies an ethics of conservation. Jonas’ writings aim to procure a new dimension of acting, which necessitates an ethics of foresight and responsibility.