Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Seeking Self-Realization in Wilderness Service Learning
by Zumeta, Benjamin O., M.A., Prescott College, 2011, 151; 1503429
Abstract (Summary)

This thesis articulates the philosophical, pedagogical, and empirical grounding for the author's assertion that wilderness service learning can facilitate self-realization. This contention's underlying principles lie in the related theories of Spinoza's Ethics (1677), Kant's Categorical Imperative (1785) and Arne Naess' Ecology of Wisdom (2008). Each of these ethicists place paramount importance on respect for all sentient beings and their right to achieve self-realization.

Aspects of experiential education, adventure education, and service learning theory each reflect this principle. Having applied heuristic research methodology to reflection upon praxis, primary data is derived from the author's practicum as a crew leader for North Cascades Wild. This program takes under-served high school youth on 13-day trips including place-based environmental education, team building, leadership, outdoor skill development and stewardship projects. This thesis illustrates how the author's philosophical background frames and informs his experience of progressing self-realization through wilderness service learning, and how in turn this praxis has reshaped and distilled his understanding of philosophy.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Leach, Shari
Commitee: Mitten, Denise, Sweeney, Mary
School: Prescott College
Department: Adventure Education
School Location: United States -- Arizona
Source: MAI 50/03M, Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: Environmental philosophy, Pedagogy, Education philosophy
Keywords: Deep ecology, Environment, Self-realization, Service learning, Stewardship, Wilderness
Publication Number: 1503429
ISBN: 978-1-267-08572-6
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