Ecology calls to mind nature “out there”—trees, rivers, oceans, animals, birds, the air, distinct ecosystems. But as Benjamin Wiker argues, an obvious part of nature has been mysteriously left out of the environmental movement: our own nature—human nature, especially its essential moral aspects.

In Defense of Nature shows that while both nature and human nature are equally important, there is a significant obstacle threatening the acceptance of this expanded account of ecology. The Left understands the exquisite, delicate harmony of the natural order, and why environmental pollution is harmful. The Right understands the exquisite, delicate harmony of the human moral order, and why moral pollution is harmful. Each side will tell you how very little a deviation it takes to cause disaster to the natural or to the moral order. But each refuses to see the other’s argument.

In Defense of Nature allows both the Left and the Right to see what the other sees so clearly, and how it all fits together, from toxic landfills and global warming, to internet addiction and human trafficking.

About the author:

Benjamin Wiker received his Ph.D. from Vanderbilt University in Theological Ethics and is currently Professor of Political Science and Director of Human Life Studies at Franciscan University of Steubenville. His previous books include Worshipping the State, Politicizing the Bible (with Scott Hahn), The Catholic Church and Science, 10 Books Every Conservative Must Read, The Darwin Myth, 10 Books that Screwed Up the World, Answering the New Atheism (with Scott Hahn), A Meaningful World, Architects of the Culture of Death (with Don DeMarco), The Mystery of the Periodic Table, and Moral Darwinism. He is the husband of one wife, the father of seven children, and the grandfather of two children. He lives in Ohio, but dreams about the Smoky Mountains.


“Dr. Wiker does more than decry the physical, chemical, and moral pollution of our way of life—the open sewer to which we have become accustomed.  He calls us to return to a saner vision of the world and man’s place in it, a vision which will bring us real delight, rather than what the pornographic hyper-palatable corn-oil products we consume promise and never deliver.”—Anthony Esolen, Author, Out of the Ashes: Rebuilding American Culture

In Defense of Nature’s timely, humorous, blunt, and sometimes disturbing account of humanity’s self-destructive trends reveals that a great part of their underlying cause is moral in nature. An eye-opener for anyone on the Left—or the Right.”—Michael Augros, Ph.D., Author, Who Designed the Designer


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Product Reviews

1 review for In Defense of Nature: The Catholic Unity of Environmental, Economic, and Moral Ecology

  1. M Barbara Howes

    After seeing Dr. Wiker being interviewed on “Franciscan University Presents” (EWTN), I got his book from my state’s inter-library loan system; it wasn’t available at my local library. Dr. Wiker’s voice comes through both in his humor and in his seriousness and concern about the state of nature and human nature. The book is very well researched and will extend the reader’s understanding of God’s great creation as well as human’s place in needing to care for our “common home.” Though it does refer to Pope Francis’ encyclical “Laudato Si,” Wiker goes into much more depth related to and beyond it. He wants to show how the “Left” and the “Right” have only a half truth in their positions on the environment and human nature. Wiker presents a view that will help the reader see the “other’s side” better and to understand greater truth. I was so enlightened by this book, I requested that my local library purchase it. Happily the librarian in charge of this said “yes!”

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In Defense of Nature: The Catholic Unity of Environmental, Economic, and Moral Ecology