I’m doing this online e-learning course with the University of Derby (via FutureLearn), called ‘Nature Connectedness’.
Holy moly, what a goldmine for me.
This is the thing I’ve been exploring in my art practice, my gardening practice, everything, for the last three years! It’s just I didn’t know what it was called! This is an exciting moment for me!
This feels like, that as a construct, Nature Connectedness is at the centre of the Venn jigsaw that I’ve been putting together all this time. I know it’s only a word, really, but it gives me an anchor point.
Nature Connectedness is ‘an internationally recognised psychological construct’, but is a relatively new term, first used around 2000 and then gaining momentum around 2015. It isn’t necessarily about logic and science, although that of course plays a part in the research. It’s more about a ‘oneness’ with nature; this goes beyond merely just having contact with nature… it’s about ‘senses, emotion, beauty, meaning and compassion’.
I’m going to be using this space to note resources, links, and so on, which I’ll read through after the course is finished.
Noticing Nature Report by The National Trust
Connecting with Nature by the RSPB
30 Days Wild – Wildlife Trusts
“Glen Albrecht (2005), termed solastagia: the lived experience of negative environmental change. This term refers to the feeling of depression (or melancholia) that is experienced with the negative transformation or desolation of a loved home environment due to climate change. Essentially, this is a form of homesickness that is experienced whilst still at home. These climate-change-related hits to wellbeing are occurring across the globe and will continue to occur at an ever-increasing rate.”
- When was the last time you were out in nature?
- Do you go out into nature as often as you like?
- Could you make a personal pledge regarding how you will spend more time in nature?
- How do you plan to go about it?
“We abuse land because we regard it as a commodity belonging to us. When we see land as a community to which we belong, we may begin to use it with love and respect.” (Leopold and Algire, 1977, Foreword)
Systemic Change, and actions we can do now from Uni of Derby
Access to Nature: inspiring people to engage with their natural environment, by Natural England
- Utilitarian (using nature for sustenance and survival)
- Dominionistic (controlling nature for our purposes)
- Naturalistic (pleasure from contact with nature)
- Ecologistic-Scientific (scientific study of nature and natural systems)
- Humanistic (an emotional bond with, and love for nature)
- Moralistic (ethical concern/judgements and revering of nature)
- Symbolic (expressing ideas through nature-based language and metaphor)
- Negativistic (aversion, fear and avoidance of nature)
- Aesthetic (the appeal from nature’s beauty)
- Recalling what you could see (Beauty)
- Focusing on how it made you feel (Emotion)
- Describing what you could you touch, smell or hear (the senses)
- Explaining the impact the experience had on you and its place in your life (Meaning)
- Considering whether it inspired you to help or gain a new-found appreciation for nature (Compassion).
My idea – drawing nearby plants in chalk on pavement – help people notice things?