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Aspects of a Pleistocene Paradigm

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Aspects of a Pleistocene Paradigm

Despite the rapacious work of the nineteenth-century lumber barons and the twentieth-century corporate energy moguls in homogenizing the continent, much wildness remains, and the fluidity of society is itself perhaps a doorway to the realization of Roxy Gordon’s statement that “real revolution is born from genetic memories of ancient reality.”

— Paul Shepard, from “Place and Human Development”

This is a link to a list that first appeared in the book Coming Home to the Pleistocene by Paul Shepard.  It enumerates the many elements of an optimally free and healthy life for human animals.  A minimum of coherence would require that any effort to tangibly eradicate domination, exploitation and alienation from our lives, as is the stated goal of anarchism, would not only aim to destroy capitalism and the state, but also all those institutions which prevent the access of all members of our species to these realities.

…in reality environmental requirements are greater and more exacting for human beings than for most other species.  Men [sic] need, in their non-human environment, open country with occasional cover, labyrinthine play areas, a rich variety of plants, animals, rocks, stars; structures and forms numbering into the thousands; initiation solitude, transitional and holy places, a wide variety of food organisms and diversity of stone and wood, nearby fresh water, large mammalian herds, cave and other habitation sites, and so on.  Beyond the ecological and psychological constants needed for normal human health there must be an environmental margin of security to allow choice and to contribute to the individuality of experience and learned behavior.

–Paul Shepard, from The Tender Carnivore and the Sacred Game

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