Does Ecology Need Marx?

  • Martha E. Gimenez
Keywords: Ecology


Does ecology need Marx? I wonder, at this point, what ecology is, for it seems to be an umbrella term, like sexism or racism, which covers a variety of macrolevel and microlevel phenomena produced by different causes and lends itself to the development of a wide variety of conflicting ideologies and theoretical frameworks. I would prefer to change the question to the following: Are Marx and Marxism contingent or essential in the struggles against environmental degradation and all forms of exploitation and oppression? Although in the eyes of environmental activists, they may seem irrelevant in the context of day-to-day struggles, the need for an all-encompassing theory capable of illuminating the necessary connections between seemingly separate problems will emerge in time, as activists learn from their experiences that there are capitalist structural barriers to the effectiveness of their individual behavioral changes and legal and political successes.