ABSTRACT

This essay asks how several major figures of Renaissance and early-modern philosophy saw the Earth as agential. It argues that the Earth’s agency served as a well-articulated and fundamental concept in their philosophies. That is, figures like Giordano Bruno and Johannes Kepler conceived of the Earth’s agency such that it solved key problems in their cosmological systems. The essay is inspired by Bruno Latour’s ecological thought, even as it acts as a corrective to certain of his assertions about early modernity. The essay concludes with some practical lessons that might be taken from early modernity.

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