Shierry Weber Nicholsen, The Love of Nature and the End of the World: The Unspoken Dimensions of Environmental Concern (MIT Press, 2002)
Those concerned and alarmed by the biospheric meltdown need to understand the obstacles that are blocking effective responses. These obstacles are mainly of two kinds: social and psychological. The unsustainable logic of accumulation that drives our contemporary capitalist society is also driving the biospheric crisis. But to change this logic would be to change the form of society itself. To do that, we would have to overcome formidable processes of social reproduction, including the addictive enjoyments of commodified life and the coercive enforcements of war machines and state terror.
The psychological blockages are no less formidable. To respond effectively to catastrophic ecocide, we would first need to bring it fully to awareness and attention. The extent of the damage being done is staggering and the implications are intimidating. We would need to acknowledge the destructiveness of our current way of life and our own deep implication in the global social process. Such awareness is painful and distressing. The feelings of fear, anxiety and guilt it may arouse are so threatening, in fact, that they provoke all our psychic defenses: we avoid this awareness by repressing and disavowing it, or by projecting it outward in the form of more violence or self-violence.