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  A term initially coined by J.K. Wright (1947) to denote the sense of thoughtful piety aroused by human awareness of the natural world and geographical space, and thus closely connected to topophilia. Individually, such feelings are commonly associated with the Romantic spirit celebrated in the early nineteenth century and captured, for example, in the landscape poetry of William Wordsworth and the paintings of Caspar David Frederick. In the early twentieth century such quasi-religious feelings for nature and landscape were expressed by a number of British explorers and geographers such as Francis Younghusband and Vaughan Cornish, and later phenomenological writers in geography such as Yi-Fu Tuan (1976) have described similar sentiments relating human consciousness to spaces of care, both natural and constructed or urban. More collectively, such feelings may yield a specific sense of human territoriality in which a people (or nation) develops an almost mystical, organic bond of attachment to its homeland (best expressed by the German term Heimat), giving rise to powerful and sometimes violent nationalist sentiments (Blut und Boden). More generally, geopiety can refer to sentiments of human attachment to elemental spaces (telluric, aquatic, etc.), dissected by Dardel (1952). The various expressions of geopiety are summarized and discussed by Bishop (1994), who seeks to divorce them from metaphysical considerations and root them in a psychoanalytic theory which dissolves a priori boundaries between self and world in the construction of human Identity. Late twentieth-century ecological writers, especially those attached to the ideas of \'deep ecology\' developed by the Norwegian philosopher Arne Naess, have extended the meaning of geopiety to a quasi-religious belief in an elemental, autochthonous bond between human life and a holistic living Earth and the moral duty of reverential environmental conduct that this entails. Many environmental thinkers and writers who do not subscribe to such a strong position would still support and express a less radical geopiety which requires the granting of agency and thus rights to all forms of life on earth, and the acknowledgement of human responsibilities in this direction (Livingstone, 1995). Such ideas underpin an increased interest in the geographical study of animals and other nonhuman life forms. (DEC)

References Bishop, P. 1994: Residence on Earth: anima mundi and a sense of geographical \'belonging\'. Ecumene 1: 51-64. Dardel, E. 1952: L\'homme et la terre: nature de la réalité géographique. Paris: Presses Universitaires de France. Livingstone, D. 1995: The polity of nature: representation, virtue, strategy. Ecumene 2: 353-77. Tuan, Y.-F. 1976: Geopiety: a theme in man\'s attachment to nature and to place. In D. Lowenthal, and M. Bowden, eds, Geographies of the mind: essays in historical geosophy in honor of John Kirtland Wright. New York: Oxford University Press, 11-39. Wright, J.K. 1947: Terrae incognitae: the place of the imagination in geography. Annals, Association of American Geographers 37: 1-15.



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