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The Blog

Personhood and the rights of nature

Over the last few years there’s been increasing debates in some quarters about the rights of nature and the feasibility of bestowing ‘personhood’ to landscapes or parts of landscapes. This is something that has many parts. It can be about legal protections, recognition of the ways First Nations people view landscapes or the natural world or a deeper ethical position on the rights of nature (even though, for some, bestowing personhood seems to contradict the idea of nature’s rights).

They’re interesting debates with some contradictions and limitations. However, they do share a common attempt to strengthen the rights of and protection of nature. You can see an interesting recent piece from The Guardian, written by Patrick Barkham, here.

*This is also published at localslowtravel.com


Behind the Image, July 2021: Early Morning, Murray River, Albury

I remember having a conversation with a good friend about the Murray River, and how most of us just treat it as a river or something to drive over. Yet it’s a state border, has deep meanings for indigenous/first nations people of the area and of course has many meanings depending on if you’re a fisher, an irrigator, a swimmer and so on.

Over the last two years or so, I’ve come to embrace early morning encounters with the river – across all seasons and all weather. Walks, rides, canoeing, looking for platypus, listening as the day begins, drinking coffees. All are part of my on-going relationship with the river.