David Lowenthal: From Eden to Earth Day

LRG's inaugural annual lecture, 2011

LRG’s inaugural annual lecture was given by Professor David Lowenthal on 1 December 2011, entitled “From Eden to Earth Day: Landscape Restoration as Mission and Metaphor.”

David Lowenthal discusses the religious roots of landscape restoration, and show how it morphed from a theological to an environmental agenda, while retaining the fervour of a sacred mission. Perceived analogies with archaeology, art, architecture, and medicine additionally shaped the aims and conventions of landscape restoration, enforcing and widening an enduring and probably unavoidable gulf between precept and practice.

In the aftermath of Lynn White, Jr.’s 1967 ‘Historical Roots of Our Ecologic Crisis’, convergent redemptive philosophies have realigned eco-theology and landscape restoration, with benefits and burdens for both realms.

David Lowenthal, born 1923, is Emeritus Professor for UCL Geography. He was a colleague of Denis Cosgrave and one of the directors of the Landscape Research Group.

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David Lowenthal - From Eden to Earth Day: Landscape Restoration as Mission and Metaphor

A video of LRG's inaugural lecture at the Architectural Association, London


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