Disabling Analysis

Framing the Disabling Analysis

This page intends to frame how ENST209 approaches the Disabling Analysis

This analysis was built into the legacy course, Social Ecology, and distinguishes World Sustainability from conventional treatments that resemble environmental management.

The legacy of disabling in World Sustainability as Social Ecology

The third part of the course reconstructs some of the major planetary and American transformations that have created these contemporary crises and have led to the imperial ideologies of the existing system of domination. We examine the dynamics through which this domination occurs, explaining how people worldwide are disabled and disempowered as a result.

Note where the disabling analysis goes: economic globalization

In the interest of world sustainability we also examine the pathologies of empire and corporate domination, asking: What are the origins of domination? How does domination block people from achieving psychological and moral-ethical consciousness, even forcing regression toward progressively less mature forms of behavior? How does domination distort reality via the production of disinformation and propaganda?

Why? Aporia vs problem

Aristotle, in his seminal Metaphysics, posed difficult problems as aporiae, or impasses. This also implies the imposition of a barrier, not simply failing to discover a path.

Consider change resistance towards sustainability

Read the Wikipedia entry, then turn to Thwink.org: The Phenomenon of Change Resistance, couched in The Limits to Growth and resistance to paradigm shifts. Note the implications of Dueling Loops.

A prelude: The path towards World Sustainability is right in front of us.

This concluding statement from Economic Strategies for Sustainability reveals where we are heading in this course toward a path for World Sustainability.

Aporia ^

The Concise Oxford Dictionary defines aporia as:

an irresolvable internal contradiction or logical disjunction in a text, argument, or theory. 2 Rhetoric the expression of doubt. – ORIGIN C16: via late L. from Gk, from aporos ‘impassable’.

The issue, then, is this: Whether sustainability depends on finding a path through an impasse or whether an obstacle must be overcome? Is World Sustainability merely a matter of changing our world view or paradigm or must active opposition be identified and an active strategy be devised? Or both?

Dueling Loops ^

Thwink.org, dedicated to sustainability, refers to what it calls Dueling Loops, with these key findings:

  1. The social side is the crux of the problem.
  2. There is a simple social structure that explains why change resistance to solving the sustainability problem has been so strong. This structure is The Dueling Loops of the Political Powerplace
  3. The main reason problem solvers (environmentalists) have been failing to solve the problem is that without realizing it, they have been pushing on the low leverage point of "more of the truth."
  4. If problem solvers would instead push on the high leverage point of "general ability to detect political deception," the system would respond in a completely different manner from the way it is now, and the problem would be solved relatively quickly. ^

Wayne Hayes, Ph.D. | Initialized: 3/16/2008 | Last Update: 03/08/2010