Australian Environmental Philosophy

Subject AIND30006 (2010)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2010.

Credit Points: 12.50
Level: 3 (Undergraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2010:

Semester 2, Parkville - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period not applicable
Assessment Period End not applicable
Last date to Self-Enrol not applicable
Census Date not applicable
Last date to Withdraw without fail not applicable

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: 2.5 One 1-hr lecture and a 1.5-hr tutorial per week
Total Time Commitment: 102 hours
Prerequisites: Completion of at least 12.5 points at second year in Australian Indigenous Studies.
Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge: None
Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements: For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the Disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Students Experiencing Academic Disadvantage Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Description, Subject Objectives, Generic Skills and Assessment Requirements of this entry. The University is dedicated to provide support to those with special requirements. Further details on the disability support scheme can be found at the 3Disability Liaison Unit website: 4


Mr Philip Morrissey


Philip Morrissey

Subject Overview: This subject considers progressive developments that are being generated through intersections of Australian ecophilosophy and Indigenous knowledge and life practices. Students will critique and reconsider aspects of dominant Western ways of knowing and understanding, particularly deep-rooted assumptions surrounding the 'nonhuman'. Students will gain awareness of how these assumptions shape our lives and relationships with the world, and examine connections between epistemology, everyday life and environmental ethics. Students will explore topics such as human perception of other-than-human life, other-than-human sentience and subjectivity, and their radical inclusion in epistemology, personal belief and societal values. Through a study of Australian ecophilosophy (notably the work of Val Plumwood, Freya Mathews and Deborah Bird Rose) and drawing from Indigenous and non-Indigenous relationships with other-than-human life of Australia, students will think about ethical, social and political issues, including human and other-than human rights, interspecies communication and democracy, ecofeminism, Indigenous and non-Indigenous relations, and decolonization.
Objectives: Students who complete this subject will:
  • have an understanding of major historical developments in modern Western epistemology and their ethical consequences;
  • have an understanding of the relationship between epistemology and life practices, in the context of Australian society;
  • have an understanding of the work of leading Australian ecophilosophers, and a grasp of new areas in environmental ethics;
  • have an understanding of the connections between ecophilosophy and Indigenous philosophy, and the unique potential increasing dialogue in this context could offer Australia, its country and peopl
Assessment: Tutorial participation and a 10-minute paper presentation, 10%; an essay of 1500 words 30% (due mid-semester); and an essay of 2500 words 60% (due at the end of semester). Students are required to attend a minimum of nine tutorials in order to qualify to have their written work assessed. Students are advised to consult the following web address for details of assessment penalties which apply to this subject
Prescribed Texts: A subject reader will be available.
Breadth Options:

This subject potentially can be taken as a breadth subject component for the following courses:

You should visit learn more about breadth subjects and read the breadth requirements for your degree, and should discuss your choice with your student adviser, before deciding on your subjects.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills: Students who successfully complete this subject will:
  • have a developed understanding of relevant critical theories and methods and make informed decisions about their use and application in relation to Indigenous subject matter;
  • be able to work effectively as an individual and member of class in producing new learning outcomes;
  • engage in high-level use of a wide range of research applications and resources and make informed decisions in respect to their usage;
  • be able to engage in an informed and reasonable discussion of ideas and issues, including those involving sensitivities, that relate to the Aboriginal and Settler communities;
  • have the ability to produce high quality written material that encompasses the complexities and sensitivities of Australian Indigenous Studies.
Related Course(s): Bachelor of Arts(Media and Communications)
Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: Australian Indigenous Studies
Australian Indigenous Studies
Australian Indigenous Studies
Australian Indigenous Studies Major
Environmental Geographies, Politics and Cultures

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