Article

Cultural Ecology and Human Ecology

Karl S. Zimmerer

in Geography

ISBN: 9780199874002
Published online February 2013 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/obo/9780199874002-0041
Cultural Ecology and Human Ecology

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Cultural ecology and human ecology are closely related and represent a continuum of approaches and themes within the human-environment and nature-society subfields of geography, the cognate disciplines, and the expanding domains of interdisciplinary ideas and research. Specifically, cultural ecology denotes the habitually embedded adaptive practices and behaviors that have coevolved in the relations between humans and their nonhuman worlds; human ecology denotes systems of bidirectional interactions, mutual influences, and dynamics of change within human societies and their environments. In addition to the meanings associated with the traditional subfields, the terms cultural ecology and human ecology both are used more expansively. Their broader meanings, increasingly common, denote the range of activities, institutions, and ideas that are rooted in the interrelations of humans, their societies, and their environments. In the early 21st century, the influence of the concepts of cultural ecology and human ecology—such as adaptation, sustainability, and degradation—is integral to rapidly expanding interdisciplinary subfields such as political ecology, sustainability science, global-change science, land change science, environment-development and population-environment studies, agrobiodiversity analysis, political ecologies of health, resilience ecology, ecological-footprint analysis, and social-ecological systems (SESs).

Article.  10197 words. 

Subjects: Earth Sciences and Geography ; Human Geography

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