By Irwin Altman, Joachim F. Wohlwill
The topic of the current quantity issues humans' s reaction to the average atmosphere, thought of at scales various from that of a home carry plant to that of huge barren region parts. Our choice to target this actual phase of the actual setting used to be triggered partly by way of the intrinsic curiosity during this topic at the a part of a various team of sodal scientists and professionals-and of laypersons, for that subject and partly by way of the relative overlook of this subject in average remedies of the environment-behavior box. It additionally serves to convey out once more the interdisdplinary nature of that box, and we're happy to were in a position to inc1ude representatives from geography, sodology, soda! ecology, and ordinary game between our participants. We think that this quantity will serve an invaluable objective in aiding to combine the locate ings and ideas during this shortly a little bit fragmented box, scat tered as they're over a truly assorted array of courses representing a equally diverse crew of spedalties. it really is was hoping that the end result can be to stimulate destiny improvement of this sector and so as to add a degree of in creased coherence to it. quantity 7 of our sequence can be dedicated to the subject matter of aged humans and the surroundings, with M. Powell Lawton becoming a member of us as visitor co-editor. The titles of the papers comprising quantity 7 are proven on web page v. Irwin Altman J oachim F. Wohlwill ix Contents advent . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
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Extra info for Behavior and the Natural Environment
This difference in orientation is attributable only in part to actual changes that have occurred in people's 28 }oachim F. Wohlwill experience of nature-the sharp reduction in fonns of animal life dangerous to man, the vast increase in accessibility, the invention of equipment to protect those venturing into natural areas from the elements, and other developments. We need to take into account also the tremendous concomitant changes in the built environment that have taken place over this period, from the small villages that were the predominant human habitat in the seventeenth century in the United States (and which afforded not only shelter, but intima te and satisfying forms of community life), to the conditions of urban decay, suburban sprawl, and other such characteristics of our contemporary habitat.
ALTERNATIVE VIEWS OF NATURE IN PSYCHOLOGICAL TERMS The preceding treatment of nature in terms of the properties of the stimulus environment characterizing that realm as distinct from the man-made world is clearly only one among a number of different views of this problem. Let us consider three alternative views in particular. They involve, (1) the notion of nature as a manifestation of processes of growth and change, (2) nature as arefuge, and (3) nature as a symbol. , through the use of landscape models), particularly as employed in the Berkeley Environmental Simulator (McKechnie, 1978), which generates actual visual trips through such a simulated environment, projected by closed-circuit television or on film, that convey a high degree of fidelity to the original scene.
This feature does not in the least militate against the potential value or plausibility of an approach to this problem that focuses on the stimulus ecology of the natural environment. It only serves to indicate that the role of particular stimulus properties is filtered through the layers of cognitive organization that constitute an individual's cognitive representation of the environment, both natural and man-made. The second point is that the concept's cognitive, structural intricacy and level of abstraction probably serve to enhance the likelihood that a rich context of connotative associations will be connected with it, through which affective and evaluative responses to natural environments may be mediated or strengthened.