The Environmental Communication Yearbook, Vol. 2

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The Environmental Communication Yearbook, Vol. 2

The Environmental Communication Yearbook Volume 2 THE ENVIRONMENTAL COMMUNICATION YEARBOOK VOLUME 2 EDITOR Susan L.

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The Environmental Communication Yearbook Volume 2

THE ENVIRONMENTAL COMMUNICATION YEARBOOK VOLUME 2

EDITOR

Susan L. Senecah State University of New York College of Environmental Science & Forestry

ASSOCIATE EDITORS

Communication and Cultural Studies Stephen P. Depoe University of Cincinnati

Journalism and Mass Media Mark Neuzil University of St. Thomas (Minnesota)

Participatory Processes Gregg B. Walker Oregon State University

EDITORIAL BOARD MEMBERS

Bernie Ankney, Indiana University of Pennsylvania Connie A. Bullis, University of Utah James G. Cantrill, Northern Michigan University Donal A. Carbaugh, University of Massachusetts, Amherst Julia B. Corbett, University of Utah Robert J. Cox, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill E. Franklin Dukes, University of Virginia, Charlottesville Sharon Dunwoody, University of Wisconsin-Madison Walter Leal Filho, Technical University of Hamburg William F. Griswold, University of Georgia Robert L. Heath, University of Houston Judith E. Hendry, University of New Mexico Patrick J. Lawler, State University of New York, College of Environmental Science and Forestry Mark S. Meisner, State University of New York, College of Environmental Science and Forestry Mark Meister, North Dakota State University

Gene (Olin E., Jr.) Meyers, Huxley College, Western Washington University Rosemary O’Leary, Syracuse University Tarla Rai Peterson, University of Utah Jean P. Retzinger, University of California at Berkeley Donny Roush, Idaho Environmental Education Association James Shanahan, Cornell University Brian C. Taylor, University of Colorado at Boulder Robert A. Thomas, Loyola University Craig Trumbo, University of Missouri Cornelius B. (Ben) Tyson, Central Connecticut State University Craig Waddell, Michigan Technical University Bruce J. Weaver, Albion College William W. Wilmot, University of Montana Michaela Zint, University of Michigan-Ann Arbor

This edition published in the Taylor & Francis e-Library, 2008. “To purchase your own copy of this or any of Taylor & Francis or Routledge’s collection of thousands of eBooks please go to www.eBookstore.tandf.co.uk.” Copyright © 2005 by Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Inc. All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced in any form, by photostat, microform, retrieval system, or any other means, without prior written permission of the publisher. Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Inc., Publishers 10 Industrial Avenue Mahwah, New Jersey 07430 www.erlbaum.com Cover design by Kathryn Houghtaling Lacey

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Includes bibliographical references and index. ISBN 0-0858-5434-7

ISBN 1-4106-1336-4 Master e-book ISBN

The Environmental Communication Yearbook Volume 2 Edited by

SUSAN L. SENECAH

2005

LAWRENCE ERLBAUM ASSOCIATES, PUBLISHERS Mahwah, New Jersey London

Contents Introduction

vii

Contributing to the Environmental Communication Yearbook

ix

1

Aggressive Mimicry: The Rhetoric of Wise Use and the Environmental Movement Jennifer A. Peeples

1

2

The Deliberative Ideal and Co-optation in the Georgia Ports Authority’s Stakeholder Evaluation Group Caitlin Wills Toker

19

3

One Hundred Years of Nuclear Discourse: Four Master Themes and Their Implications for Environmental Communication William J. Kinsella

49

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Narrative Inclusions and Exclusions in a Nuclear Controversy Jennifer Duffield Hamilton

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Perspectives on Prescribed Burning: Issues and Directions for Developing Campaign Messages Denise E. DeLorme, Scott C. Hagen, I. Jack Stout

99

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The Logic of Colonization in the “What Would Jesus Drive?” Anti-SUV Campaign Judith Hendry and Janet Cramer

115

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David Defeats Goliath on the Banks of the Delaware: Rhetorical Legitimacy and the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area Debate Bruce J. Weaver

133

Author Index

163

Subject Index

169 v

Introduction Like Volume 1 of The Environmental Communication Yearbook, Volume 2 continues to showcase a diversity of articles that reflects the broad continuum of interests embraced by environmental communication. Environmental public policies, whether local or global, do not simply appear by wishing so; they emerge after values are repeatedly signified in ways that break the frame of previous expectations and challenge social and economic powers. They may produce sudden tidal waves or convoluted paths to policy change or belief shifts, but they are always unfolding. Understanding these continuing struggles and the forms they take is at the vital core of environmental communication. DeLorme, Hagen, and Stout analyze a marketing approach to better communicate about prescribed burns in Florida, and other insight regarding message development for environmental communication campaigns. Kinsella reviews a century of nuclear discourse, and offers four themes that characterize it and the implications these hold for environmental communication on the nuclear issues, policies, and campaigns of the 21st century. Hamilton examines a 1995 nuclear controversy over radium stored at the former Fernald nuclear weapons production site in Ohio. Her semionarrative framework reveals the strategies for fulfilling an agenda by studying how actors make sense of events in a controversy and attempt to mobilize other actors by creating connections among their interests. These narrative inclusion or exclusions account for the ability or inability of actors in a social controversy to resolve conflict by creating a compatible agenda. Hendry and Cramer examine the Evangelical Environmental Network’s “What Would Jesus Drive?” anti-sports utility vehicle campaign through the lens of the logic of colonization. They contend that the campaign reinforces a dual framework by which greater value or status is given to one component of the dualistic pair over the other, thus rationalizing the domination of the greater over the lesser, the superior over the inferior. Peeples analyzes a series of 1970s articles written by Ron Arnold, cofounder of the Wise Use Movement, as a backlash to environmentalism. She traces the evolution of Wise Use’s employment of green discourse to better understand the function and scope of the co-opted rhetoric. Weaver examines the discourse in the campaign that overturned the U.S. government’s 1965 establishment of the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area and the Tocks Island Dam Project, a massive federally funded undertaking that was to include damming the Delaware River and creating a 37-mile-long reservoir. Wills Toker examines the Georgia Ports Authority’s Stakeholder Evaluation Group to evaluate the benefits of what is often touted to be a more inclusive, beneficial, and consensus-based vii

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public participation process model. She contends that the state agency convener co-opted the deliberative terms of the issues and thereby controlled the process. The dedicated associate editors of Volumes 1 and 2 deserve much appreciation. They were instrumental to the quality of Volumes 1 and 2 of The Environmental Communication Yearbook. Gregg Walker oversaw the review process of manuscripts that focused on participatory processes. Mark Neuzil did the same for manuscripts that focused on mass media. Finally, Steve Depoe coordinated the reviews of a hefty number of manuscripts on the broadest area, communication studies. Steve Depoe will apply his many talents and skills to his new role as Editor, beginning with Volume 3 of The Environmental Communication Yearbook. Much appreciation is also due to the Editorial Board Members and guest reviewers for their thoughtful and detailed reviews. Many authors commented on how pleased they were with the quality of the reviews, and how useful they were as guides for productively revising their papers. Of course, the reviewers and associate editors would have little to do if the diverse environmental communication community had not chosen to support this publication as the showcase of their fine theoretical and applied research about how we humans work out our relationships with each other about the nonhuman world. Finally, for the privilege of working with and serving all of these fine environmental communication professionals, I am most grateful. ––Susan L. Senecah, Editor

Contributing to the Environmental Communication Yearbook The Environmental Communication Yearbook is a multidisciplinary forum through which a broad audience of academics, professionals, and practitioners can share and build theoretical, critical, and applied scholarship addressing environmental communication in a variety of contexts. This peer-reviewed annual publication invites submissions that showcase and/or advance our understanding of the production, reception, contexts, or processes of human communication regarding environmental issues. Theoretical expositions, literature reviews, case studies, cultural and mass media studies, best practices, and essays on emerging issues are welcome, as are both qualitative and quantitative methodologies. Areas of topical coverage will include: • Participatory processes: public participation, collaborative decision making, dispute resolution, consensus-building processes, regulatory negotiations, community dialogue, building civic capacity. • Journalism and mass communication: newspaper, magazine, book, and other forms of printed mass media; advertising and public relations; media studies; and radio, television, and Internet broadcasting. • Communication studies: rhetorical/historical case studies, organizational analyses, public relations/issues management; interpersonal/relational dimensions, risk communication, and psychological/cognitive research, all of which examine the origins, content, structure, and outcomes of discourse about environmental issues. Submission are accepted on an ongoing basis for inclusion in subsequent volumes of the Yearbook. The Environmental Communication Yearbook is intended for use by researchers, scholars, students, and practitioners in environmental communication, journalism, rhetoric, public relations, mass communication, risk analysis, political science, environmental education, environmental studies, and public administration, as well as policymakers. Others interested in environmental issues and the communication channels used for discourse and information dissemination on the topic will also find it valuable. Information for Contributors: Manuscripts should conform to current guidelines established by the American Psychological Association. Send five copies of ix

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each submission to Stephen P. Depoe, Department of Communication, P.O. Box 210184, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, OH 45221-0184. Full guidelines for submitting work to the Environmental Communication Yearbook can be found at www.erlbaum.com.

CHAPTER ONE

Aggressive Mimicry: The Rhetoric of Wise Use and the Environmental Movement

Jennifer A. Peeples Utah State University

Wise Use will be the environmentalism of the 21st century. (Alan Gottlieb, The Wise Use Agenda, 1989, p. XX)

Since the first Earth Day in 1970, as Phil Brick explained, “The U.S. environmental movement has enjoyed high levels of public support, fighting for tougher laws to protect the nation’s air, water, and natural resources” (1995, p. 17). By the early 1980s, the discourse of the environmental movement with its earth icon, naturescapes, recycle symbol, and pro-nature slogans was firmly embedded into the consciousness and conscience of most Americans. Seven percent of Americans described themselves as being “environmentally active,” 55% said they were “sympathetic with the aims of the movement,” and 45% felt that protecting the environment was “so important that requirements and standards [could not] be too high and continuing environmental improvements [should] be made regardless of cost” (Sale, 1993, p. 44). The movement’s legislative focus brought it into direct conflict with natural resource industries, outdoor recreation groups, and landowners who felt that environmental laws were violating their interests. Surprisingly, not until the formation of the Wise Use movement in the 1980s did these counterenvironmental entities begin to work as a successful coalition to fight environmental regulation. As Wise Use leader Ron Arnold proudly boasted in The New York Times, “No one was aware that environmentalism was a problem until we came along” (Egan, 1995, p. A18). Where Wise Use made its greatest strides was in uniting disparate organizations into a working coalition. “Some observers believe that Wise Use movement has no peer when it comes to its ability to link its far-flung members together and 1

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mobilize them” contended Jacqueline Vaughn Switzer in Green Backlash: The History and Politics of Environmental Opposition in the U.S. (1997, p. 205). A decade before Wise Use was established, a group of conservative Western lawmakers on Capital Hill joined forces to form the Sagebrush Rebellion. The Rebellion shared many of the same interests as the Wise Use movement: restricting federal control over natural resources, lessening environmental organizations’ say over the use of land, and keeping decisions about privately owned land private. The movement began with public land ranchers, later attracting timber, energy, and offroad vehicle groups. The conservative emphasis and a focus on Western states’ rights encouraged Ronald Reagan to declare in 1980 that he “was a Sagebrush Rebel too” (Maughan & Nilson, 1993). Political science professors Ralph Maughan and Douglas Nilson contended that “most Sagebrush Rebels were basically satisfied by the old system of federal lands where they enjoyed many of the privileges of ownership … but avoided many of the costs of ownership. The costs were borne by the federal government” (1993, Sagebrush Rebellion, para. 5). Although interest in the Sagebrush Rebellion was high in the 1980s, Switzer (1997) maintained that the coalition collapsed in the early 1990s due, in part, to the many competing interests served by the rebellion. Maughan and Nilson disagreed, arguing that the Rebellion accomplished the majority of its goals through Secretary of the Interior James Watt’s “dramatic emphasis on commodity development of natural resources,” the same types of programs that galvanized the environmental movement against Watt and the Reagan administration (1993, Sagebrush Rebellion, para. 7). The concerns of the Rebellion were reborn in Wise Use, with changes in strategies and tactics that brought the movement more notice, notoriety, and results than were produced by its predecessor. The organizations housed under the Wise Use umbrella were even more diverse than before. Listed in the index of the 1989 Wise Use Agenda are organizations as disparate as Women in Timber, the Panhandle Snowmobile Association, the National Rifle Association of America, and DuPont. Even so, the movement maintained coalitions in all 50 states for over a decade. Moreover, the coalitions were active. In an era when voter turnout was at a palpable low, Wise Use was able been able to muster its constituency for various campaigns. For example, in a meeting to discuss whether to alter the boundaries surrounding Yellowstone National Park, Wise Use was able to organize a turnout of over 700 people (Lewis, 1995). Remarking specifically on Wise Use’s campaign against the Clean Air Act, Leon Billings, who assisted in drafting the 1972 Act, maintained, “This has been far and away the best organized and most heavily financed campaign I have seen in 30 years” (as quoted in Warrick, 1997, p. A9). Donald Snow, in an article on public lands, challenged the reader to “go line by line down the list of environmental policy accomplishments since around 1970, and in almost every case you’ll find a Wise Use counterattack” (1994, pp. 70–71). In 1995, Phil Brick stated, “Wise Use groups, both local and national, now resist every new environmental initiative and are attempting to roll back existing environmental laws” (1995, p. 19). Although the

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movement was less successful in passing its own legislation, Wise Use’s unquestionable strength was in stalling or blocking environmental policy (Egan, 1991). What makes the interaction between Wise Use and environmentalists so intriguing is Wise Use leaders’ decision to construct the movement using the discourse and structure of its opposition, the environmentalists. Alan Gottlieb—the editor of the Wise Use Agenda, director of the Center for the Defense of Free Enterprise, and chief fundraiser for the movement—argued not only that Wise Use was a more authentic “conservation” organization than were the mainstream environmental groups, but maintained also that it would be the new “environmentalism” for the 21st century (1989, pp. X–XI). Following this rhetorical framework, individual organizations appropriated green discourse for their causes. For example, The National Wetlands Coalition, an environmental sounding organization, was formed to fight the Endangered Species Act—unquestionably one of the greatest legislative victories of the environmental movement. The Abundant Wildlife Society, Citizens for the Environment, Environmental Conservation Organization (ECO), and the National Wetlands Coalition are all Wise Use organizations (Hopey, 1995). Communication scholars describe the appropriation of another’s voice as a persuasive strategy. John M. Murphy (1997), John Angus Campbell (1986), Cheryl Jorgensen-Earp (1990), and Anne Teresa Demo (2000) all assessed the strategy as one that performs a temporary function, such as making a connection between a speaker and a disparate audience (Murphy, 1997), linking a prior tradition with a radical one (Campbell, 1986), or constructing a bridge between a social movement and an established tradition. Jorgensen-Earp, in her discussion of images of women in the Victorian era, asserted, “During the life of some movements … there is a subtle, and at times short-lived, strategy of utilizing the very discourse which the movement hopes to change” (1990, p. 82). She stated, “Familiar images which form a bridge to the past allow the rhetor to approach and be understood by a conservative or even reactionary audience” (p. 83). It is through the knowing of the past, Jorgensen- Earp argued, that the audience can face the prospects of an uncertain future (1990). Anne Teresa Demo (2000) discussed the Guerrilla Girls’ use of discourse appropriation to call attention to the patriarchy and sexism in the art world. Instead of mimicking their opposition, the Guerrilla Girls mock their “opposite” by co-opting traditional feminine constructs, such as using the color pink on their broadsides and delivering their political commentary in the airy sigh of Marilyn Monroe. These examples of discourse appropriation point to its potential to show the relationship between speakers and audiences, old concepts and new, the past and the future, and unjust actions and just. What is new about Wise Use’s application of the “other’s” discourse is that the mimic’s stated goal is to permanently assume the identity of the source of its rhetoric. In response to this co-optation of their discourse, environmentalists concentrated their energy on “outing” these organizations from behind their symbolically constructed “environmental” façade in order to show their true industrial

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anti-environmental purpose. Wise Use organizations were deemed “AstroTurf” by environmentalists, because they were neither “green” nor “grass” roots (Brick, 1995). Tom Novick, of the Western States Center (an environmental group that monitors Wise Use) argued, “They portray themselves as seeking balance in the environmental debate, you know, the whole phrase ‘Wise Use’ sounds good. Who could be against Wise Use? The reality is when you pull that veneer off, you find, as I said, that they’re primarily financed by resource industries that benefit from the rollback of environmental laws” (as quoted in “Wise Move?,” 1996). This condemnation of Wise Use for being a false grassroots environmental group has been the subject of a number of articles by environmental organizations and newspapers (e.g., see Baumann, 1991; Byrnes, 1992; Fritsch, 1996; Hopey, 1995; Lewis, 1995; Maughan, 1995; Stapleton, 1992). According to Brick, “Many environmentalists [saw] the movement as little more than a collection of phony citizen groups organized by big business to do its bidding” (1995, p. 19). Although the environmentalists made a compelling argument that Wise Use was using rhetoric associated with the environmental movement(s) for personal gain, I question the reasoning that Wise Use adopted “green”-sounding names in order to dupe the public. By the time Wise Use entered the environmental fray, the interested American public had already come into contact with Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring and Aldo Leopold’s “Land Ethic.” They owned beautiful coffee table books with glossy pictures of howling wolves, had seen images of earth from space, and watched garbage-laden barges circling the ocean on the evening news. Environmentalism was neither new nor enigmatic. To promote the idea that Americans would be fooled into thinking that an association that advocated killing cougars or cutting forests was “green” because the organization had a title that included the terms wildlife or environment is to belittle the sophistication of Wise Use and its audience. To explain this complimentary, contradictory, and at times confusing appropriation of environmental rhetoric, I have analyzed a series of eight articles written by Ron Arnold for Logging Management magazine from February 1979 through June 1980. Today, this series is recognized by many as the place where Arnold mapped out the structure of a coalition that would eventually become the Wise Use movement (Ramos, 1995; Switzer, 1997). I then trace the transformation of Arnold’s concepts from Logging Management into tactics used in The Wise Use Agenda: The Citizen’s Policy Guide to Environmental Resource Issues, edited by Alan Gottlieb in 1989, and various Wise Use web sites. Web sites were chosen for this analysis based on Switzer’s (1997) list of the major umbrella organizations associated with Wise Use: the Center for the Defense of Free Enterprise, the Alliance for America, the People for the West!, and the Blue Ribbon Coalition. The inclusion of the Internet is especially important because, as Switzer noted, “Those living in rural areas appear to make considerable use of the Internet as a way of staying in touch with the other supporters, and even the smallest of the groups have established home pages on the World Wide Web” (p. 205).

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The texts for this analysis construct a chronology of Wise Use’s appropriation of environmental rhetoric, beginning with Ron Arnold’s prescription for a movement that could oppose environmentalism, through the movement’s initiation into public debate, and ending with the public rhetoric of individual organizations. From this case study, I draw out examples of three types of appropriation: mimicry of structure, co-optation of language, and aggressive mimicry of identity. I conclude with a discussion of the implications of this case study for social movement theory and changes in the environmental movement. This analysis of Wise Use’s rhetoric fulfills a call for communication research made by Star Muir and Celeste Condit in the 1997 special edition on environmental communication in Critical Studies in Mass Communication. They argued that although there are many references to the Wise Use movement, there is “no extended analysis of this formidable coalescence of social forces” (p. 376). Additionally, although Wise Use never became the anti- environmental legislation powerhouse that environmentalists feared, the strategies and tactics used by Wise Use have forever changed the way in which industry and organizations respond to social movements’ attempts at legislative change. ORIGINS OF WISE USE The two individuals most closely identified as “founding leaders” of Wise Use, according to Switzer, are Ron Arnold and Alan Gottlieb. Within the movement, Arnold is the spokesperson. Far from the stereotypical natural resource worker, he is highly educated in Western history and the environmental movement (Switzer, 1997). Gottlieb is a well established, if not controversial, fundraiser and organizer (Switzer, 1997). Switzer noted, “As policy entrepreneurs, they are savvy, sophisticated, and extremely aware of the impact of their commentary and rhetoric” (p. 197). She concluded, “No one matches their expertise in the field” (p. 198). In the 1960s, Ron Arnold was a Sierra Club member who became disillusioned with the tactics of the environmental movement. In the early 1970s, he began creating media presentations for timber firms and industrial clients (Switzer, 1997). These paradoxical experiences would provide the background for his eight-part series of articles in Logging Management, 1979–1980. The titles for Arnold’s series read like a war manual: “Assessing Environmentalism: Know Your Opponent” (1979b), “Taking the Offensive” (1979c), and “History, the Unconventional Weapon” (1979d). The subtitle for the first article in the series stated the motivation behind all eight: “A former environmentalist explains what you should know about the environmentalists, why the forest industry has lost so many battles, and how to fight environmentalists more effectively” (1979a, p. 22). The answer to the last part (contrary to the battle metaphors) can be summed up simply as “If you can’t beat ’em, become ’em,” which must have been a surprise to the magazine’s forest industry readers.

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The logging industry, although honorable in its intentions, argued Arnold, had approached the problem of environmental regulation all wrong. He maintained that logging management had attempted to ignore environmentalists and counter their claims of industry wrongdoing by performing their job as well as possible; namely, using better technology and being more efficient. With his legislation scorecard (Environmentalists 6, Industry 2), Arnold pointed out that industry must change its game plan—they were losing the battle for the forest. MIMICKING STRUCTURE The greatest change envisioned by Ron Arnold was in the structure of the forest industry. He explained, “It is primarily the environmentalist struggle group and its attorneys that have made environmentalism an idea whose time has come in modern America (1980a, p. 35). The list of advantages of volunteer advocacy groups (as opposed to industry spokespeople) included shaping public opinion, lobbying legislators, and litigating. Most important, “Non-profit groups command respect for their anti-establishment stands by invoking altruism, which even the industry’s trade associations cannot do” (1980a, p. 35). Toward the end of his series, Arnold answered the question, “What will work to stop environmentalists?”: “My answer may seem alien to logging managers, but bear with the strangeness: we must combine our traditional approaches with the same activist techniques that have been so devastating in environmentalist hands … you can only fight an activist movement with an activist movement” (1980b, p. 39). The change he envisioned would be systemic. Citing Reginald H. Jones, Arnold stated, “Chief executive officers of all major corporations will have to become activists rather than adaptive. There will be no room for Neanderthals” (1979c, p. 28). As to what these activists’ organizations would look like, Arnold (1980a) pointed to the Sierra Club Political Handbook as a masterpiece of practical politics. He set as the goal of the logging industry to “out Sierra Club the Sierra Club” (1980b, p. 40). Most important, these organizations needed to be of “the people.” Arnold argued that industry underestimated the power of a logger in full logging apparel appearing at the capital. Only a few grassroots logging organizations existed prior to Arnold’s writing. He cited Women in Timber as an example of a group having provided the right kind of support for industry, but claimed that logging managers did not take these organizations seriously enough. Arnold commented that one “benighted soul” was overheard saying, “We don’t want to dilute our power in a proliferation of splinter groups!” (1980b, p. 40). This shortsightedness on the part of natural resource organizations would change quickly. By 1989, the Wise Use Agenda would list 224 citizen organizations, individuals, and government agencies that attended the Multiple Use Strategy Conference in Reno, Nevada. Both activist groups and industry attended. Women and Timber and the timber giant Boise Cascade Corporation were represented.

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Arnold’s vision for activists and industry had also moved beyond logging. Representatives from Exxon sat next to the Arizona Outdoor Coalition. The National Rifle Association and DuPont may have conversed with the West Coast Alliance for Resources and Environment (WE CARE) from Eureka, California. This change of structure from industry to activism also allowed for a change in rhetorical tactics. Industry was required to speak the language of business; activists were not. In order to fulfill its transformation into a “grassroots” advocacy group, Wise Use needed an “establishment” to oppose. It chose the environmentalists. For decades, environmental groups publicly portrayed themselves as being independent organizations, working against behemoth industries and state and federal governments in an uphill struggle to save the environment. After a series of landmark legislative victories in the 1960s and 1970s—including the Wilderness Act, the Endangered Species Act, the Clean Air Act, and National Environmental Protection Act—the concept of environmentalists as powerful government insiders was not beyond the scope of the imagination. Additionally, changes in focus in the 1980s from local advocacy to D.C. lobbying left some environmental organizations open to the claim they had let their grassroots atrophy (Sale, 1993). By the time the Wise Use Agenda was in print, the idea of the movement being “grassroots” was well established within like-minded organizations. The introduction to the Wise Use Agenda (1989) stated, “This document is unique in American history: A genuine grass roots voice asking that we use our environment wisely, that we seek a middle ground, that we follow the ideal of sustainable development, that we go to neither the extreme of reckless plunder of the Earth or blind opposition to progress” (p. 2, my italics). By mimicking the structure of environmental organizations (or at least making declarations as such), Wise Use organizations positioned themselves to make the rhetorical claim that they spoke for “the people.” Various Wise Use websites illustrate this theme. On the People for the West! web site (the name being an exemplar in and of itself), Guy Baier stated, “We represent downtown, mainstream America” (1999). The Blue Ribbon Coalition rallied: “Let’s keep getting the ‘real people’ message out …. What we need to do is to ‘Capture that High Ground’ by Activating Mr. & Ms. Average American to stand up and let their voice be heard when adverse environmental legislation is up for consideration …. Together we can build a better America … one that’s much better than the one that the ‘socially elite’ planners would provide for us” (1999). Although the Blue Ribbon quote is ambiguous as to who the “social elite” are, the People for the West! web site stated that it is “the ‘elitist, preservationist agenda’ of environmentalists” that their organization is fighting (1999). Ted Blackman, writing for Forest Industries, also clarified who are considered “the people”: “Rural America is under attack and rural America has been silent too long … the ‘preservationist industry’ draws its strength from urban populations which are far removed from natural resources” (1991, p. 5). In response to environmentalists’ attempts to preserve some places that do not show the marks of contemporary society, Wise Use presented an alternative

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idealized past: a combination of turn-of-the-century conservationism and 1950s Midwest America. This rival vision changed the focus from maintaining what is worthy of preservation in the American landscape to maintaining what is worthy of preservation within Americans. In general, the structure of an organization entitles its members to the use of certain discourses. The mimicry of a particular structure also appears to permit the appropriation of a linked discourse, as in this case in which being a “grassroots” organization allows Wise Use to speak for “the people.” This particular structure/discourse is one that demands an “other.” For a “grassroots” activist organization to exist, there needs to be an “establishment” to oppose. It appears as though it is not necessary for the opposition to acknowledge or incorporate this constructed identity for it to be effective. As long as the “grassroots” group views the other to be a more powerful, embedded entity worthy of opposition, the structure/discourse is enough to motivate opposition without greater acknowledgment. CO-OPTING LANGUAGE The structural appropriation of environmentalism was only the initial step in Arnold’s strategy. He called on natural resource users to search the historical record for laws, ideas, or information that the industry could use to bolster its public image. Members of the Wise Use movement implemented this strategy in a fashion that created an identity for the members that was more comprehensive than were the identities formed around specific land use (e.g. miner, rancher, ORV user, etc.). In “History, the Unconventional Weapon” (1979d), Arnold traced the etymology of the term conservation, pointing to what he considered the fallacious use of the term in support of wilderness preservation and wildlife protection. He argued, “Conservation actually developed in the 1890s as a scientific movement led by a small group of professional men … whose objective was the orderly, efficient use of resources under the guidance of experts, a principle they called wise use. By this definition, I see the forest industry as the world’s foremost conservationist” (1979d, p. 30). He went on to claim that the “vociferous” preservationists falsely appropriated this conservation heritage. This one-paragraph sidenote would initiate the reconstruction of natural resource industries, hunters, and other land “users” as not only being the true conservationists, but also the true environmentalists. This led to Alan Gottlieb’s proclamation in the Wise Use Agenda that “Wise Use will be the environmentalism of the 21st century” (1989, p. XX; see also Maughan & Nilson, 1993). This “new environmentalism” was not attempting to embody the environmental movement(s) as envisioned by the likes of John Muir, David Brower, or an (ex)radical like Dave Foreman. In a direct response to environmental thinkers such as Aldo Leopold, who argued that human ethics must be enlarged to include the land, Wise Use members maintained that “true conservationism” and “true environmentalism” must be reconceptualized to include people. On their web

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sites, advocates highlight their love of nature and their outdoor experiences, but maintain that any understanding of the environment that excludes humans is either incorrect in its assumptions and/or immoral in its assertions. This theme of enlarging the concept of “nature” to include humans is found throughout the Wise Use Agenda. In the preface to the text, Gottlieb argued, “Anti-people attitudes have no place in an ethical view of mankind. We have a right to be here. We are as natural as the whales. Our curiosity and intelligence have a rightful place in nature (or we wouldn’t have it: Nature is unforgiving of serious mistakes)” (1989, p. XVIII). In a letter to then-President George H. Bush, Liz Tomascheski-Adams for the West Coast Alliance for Resources and Environment (WE CARE) wrote: “Our culture here [“rural America”] is a fragile ecosystem all its own, made up of hard-working people and the land, an inter-relationship which provides food and fiber for the rest of the country” (Gottlieb, 1989, p. 65). The first Wise Use “rule of faith” on the Center for the Defense of Free Enterprise web site is “Humans, like all organisms, must use natural resources to survive” (2003, my italics). Stemming from Wise Use’s appropriation of “conservation,” members argue for the flipping of the human–nature binary, which Wise Use members perceive as environmentalism’s privileging of the natural. This reversal can be seen in the mission statement for the Alliance for America: “Human needs come first. We value animals, but we reject the view that elevates animals rights above human needs, and plant communities above human communities” (2003). This human/nature discourse is the foundation for Wise Use’s definition of conservationism and environmentalism. In its self-description, the Alliance for America claimed it is a “non-profit, grassroots organization of conservationists dedicated to finally bringing human concerns into environmental decision-making” (2003). The final sentence of the Alliance for America mission statement reads: “We are the new face of conservationism, one that cares about the environment and people” (2003). The National Coalition for Public Lands and Natural Resources (People for the West!) web site compares the old environmentalism with the new: “The ‘new environmentalism’ is based on hope instead of fear, solution instead of conflict, education instead of litigation, science instead of emotion, and on employing human resources rather than destroying human resources” (1997). This reconstruction of environmentalism also means a new identity for those who were vilified by the old order. In an article in The New York Times, Clark Collins, a leader of the Blue Ribbon Coalition, stated, “I see all of this as a new environmental movement. The characterization of us as rapers and pillagers is not right. We want to protect the environment” (as quoted in Egan, 1991, p. A18). The science of ecology began to influence political decision making as early as the 1920s. In the United States, species were counted, organisms were differentiated, and the interconnections between previously discrete entities began to fascinate and worry scientists, who started to call on others to see the big natural picture they were divining: the ecosystem (Sellars, 1997). The science was hard to counter—the reduction of predators was influencing the health of prey, clear-cut

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forests were fouling streams, pesticides were killing birds. The decisions made by land managers and natural resource users had far-reaching negative ramifications for natural systems previously inconceivable to most citizens and lawmakers. Terms like ecosystem, organism, species, and of course nature and the environment were trotted out for the sole purpose (in the minds of many natural resource users) of taking away people’s right to do what they pleased with the land they owned or used. In usurping the power of this discourse, Wise Use attempted to perform what Karlyn Kohrs Campbell referred to as a symbolic reversal, the act of altering a devil term in an attempt to “exploit the power … lurking in these terms as potential sources of strength” (1973, p. 82). Rural communities were now the true “endangered species” and humans too were “organisms” that deserved protection. The explanation for why the Wise Use movement was able to capture the attention of the media and environmentalists may have also contributed to Wise Use’s subsequent fade from the headlines. According to Stewart, Smith, and Denton’s examination of persuasion, “Social movements must create a collective identity so individuals come to identify themselves as a group through shared views of the social environment, shared goals, and shared opinions about the possibilities and limits of collective action” (2001, p. 73). In order to create that identity, Robert Brulle contended, “a new narrative of society must be created. This voicing of a new representation of the social world is the act of identity formation of a social movement” (1996, p. 62). And, according to Robert Cathcart, movements are then “carried forward through language, both verbal and nonverbal, in strategic ways that bring about identification of the individual with the movement” (1972, p. 86). Although Wise Use successfully brought together a vast coalition of natural resource users, they accomplished the task not by creating a new narrative (which Brulle argued is necessary for a group identity), but instead by augmenting and symbolically reversing an existing discourse to complement an existing natural resource ideology, a strategy that may not have long-term staying power. By borrowing the conservation/environmental discourse, Wise Use failed to form a new collective identity and, when the initial impetus to unite passed, the disparate groups fell back on their old identities as loggers, miners, ATV/ORV users, hunters, and others. AGGRESSIVE MIMICRY New Social Movement theorists have asserted that “contemporary actors are highly intentional and reflexive in their use of symbols, and highly conscious of symbolic meaning in their actions” (Ingalsbee, 1996, p. 266). Ron Arnold was surely no exception. In his article, “Defeating Environmentalism,” he stated, “They [environmentalists] made a new world of discourse and set themselves up as its prophets. We [in the forest industry] were shut out because we didn’t understand what they were doing—it was outside our experience” (1980b, p. 39). According to Arnold, what

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environmentalists were creating with their discourse was a set of ideologies, values, and ethics that changed the public’s perception of the world and led to an acceptance for the lifestyles they advocated (1980a, p. 37). In his article, “Taking the Offensive,” he argued, “Environmental ideologies, the big philosophical ideas like ‘the land ethic’ and ‘ecological conscience’ have become pervasive cultural symbols that quietly feed public support for indiscriminate wilderness withdrawals and other unwise measures …. Failure to appreciate the power of ideology, however, will be disastrous” (1979c, p. 25). Arnold, explicitly and implicitly through his discussion and examples, offered the means to counter environmentalists’ beliefs: Users had to change the public’s attitude toward the environmentalists’ ideology while bolstering their own. In order to do this, Arnold advocated for logging management to recast the environmental ideology as being antipeople and antidevelopment. Differentiating Wise Use’s employment of the term environment from that of its opposition (allowing for the movement’s use of that designation without apology), Arnold stated that environmentalism (as opposed to being concerned for the environment) sustains a people-hating ideology (1980b). Environmentalism, he argued, has “[a] dark strain of anti-humanity that despises everything human” (1979b, p. 35). Arnold also maintained, “The environmental ethic, in short, is an elegant mockery of humanity …” (1979c, p. 45). In a final example, he enlarged the sins of the environmentalists from being against humans to beings against progress and development, which may be an even greater transgression when one exists within a capitalist system. He stated, the “ideological reason for their obstructionist stance … [is] anti-technology and anti-civilization values” (1979c, p. 42). This theme was present in many of his arguments and with a moral vehemence that has been repeated in the Wise Use Agenda and in current web sites. In the call to action that prefaced the Agenda, Alan Gottlieb linked the claim of an anti-people attitude to the desecration of democracy and public policy: “But even though commentators have pointed out again and again that man is an integral component of the earth’s ecosystem, an ill-conceived stain of purism has polluted the public debate with a fanatic anti-people ideology” (1989, p. XVIII). Gottlieb also noted that “during the past twenty years that disdainful ‘people are no good’ attitude has come to pervade American law in one environmental statue after another” (1989, pp. XVIII–XIX). The Center for the Defense of Free Enterprise stated what has been implicit in other examples, namely that the anti-people mentality Wise Use associates with environmentalism is pathological. The “What Do We Believe” section of the CFDFE web site stipulates: “Environmentalism by its very nature promotes feelings of guilt for existing, which naturally degenerate into pessimism, self-loathing and depression …. Environmentalists call humanity a cancer on the earth; wise users call us a joy” (2003). Although proclaiming to be “the environmentalism of the 21st century” in The Wise Use Agenda, organizations were at the same time equating environmentalist to pathological people haters and making statements such as this one attributed to

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Ron Arnold: “Our goal is to destroy, to eradicate the environmental movement …. We’re mad as hell. We’re not going to take it any more. We’re dead serious—we’re going to destroy them” (Long, 1991; see also Helvarg, 1994; Udall & Olsen, 1992). Paul and Anne Ehrlich described this contradictory practice as “aggressive mimicry.” They stated that Wise Use “often give themselves names resembling those of genuine environmental or scientific public interest groups…. In keeping with aggressive mimicry, these organizations often actively work against the interests implied in their names” (1996, p. 16). Extending this definition, I maintain that those entities using the strategy of aggressive mimicry attempt to take over the identity of their opposition for personal gain, either by using names and other discourse that evokes the “other,” or by directly calling into question identity ownership. Robert Jackson, in Bioscience, described the behavior of spiders engaging in aggressive mimicry. He noted, “An aggressive mimic might, for example, imitate an insect that is the intended victim’s prey. In this way, an aggressive mimic can gain control over its prey’s behavior” (1992, para. 3). Additionally, “In aggressive mimicry … a predator provides another spider species, its prey, with a signal. But in this instance, the predator attempts to elicit a response that benefits itself and not the prey” (1992, para. 7). For spiders in Jackson’s research, the audience of the mimicking behavior is always the victim; the goal of the aggressor is to control its prey’s behavior. Although environmentalists have viewed the audience for Wise Use as the unwary public (whom environmentalists try to “inform” by unmasking the movement), Wise Use’s communicative style, not unlike that of the spiders, makes more sense when viewed in terms of the audience being environmentalists. With limited resources available to them, environmentalists have been forced into responding to what they perceive as threats to their identity, to the corrupting of their discourse, and to the claim that environmentalists can no longer speak for the average citizen. In addition, environmentalists, who have created an identity around battling government and industry, have had to answer to being positioned as “the establishment” in a time when it was detrimental to be associated with “big government.” In this way, the messages sent by Wise Use have been able to control the actions of its “prey” through their mimicry of its structure and co-option of its discourse. This research adds to existing work on discourse appropriation by showing the importance of identity construction in altering the impact of co-opted rhetoric. The use of language closely associated with an organization gives the rhetor the appearance of aligning him- or herself with that group. For example, in conflicts over abortion, the decision to use the terms baby or fetus to describe what comes about after conception aligns the rhetor with the pro-life or pro-choice ideologies. That said, the choice to appropriate rhetoric with the explicit goal of supplanting or negating the source of the discourse may significantly change the effect of the co-opted rhetoric for those mimicked, although not necessarily for the general audience. No national or popular media source found in this research referred to members of Wise Use as environmentalists, conservationists, or the originators of

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a “new environmentalism.” In that way, Wise Use’s identity construction failed. What was successful about Wise Use’s employment of aggressive mimicry was its ability to force a response from its opponent, thereby taking away limited time, money, and energy that could have been used for strengthening and expanding the environmental agenda. Although not fulfilling the stated goal of Wise Use, this was an impressive victory nonetheless. The impact of aggressive mimicry for the environmental movement is apparent, but is there further significance for the strategy of aggressive identity co-optation as described here? Social movements have been changing through the past few decades. “Old” social movements, such as the labor movement, have been replaced by “new” movements whose goals and structure are markedly different from the old. As Steven M. Buechler explained: The conflicts in which new social movements engage are less about material reproduction and more about cultural reproduction, social integration and socialization. The new movements bring with them a new politics concerned with quality of life, projects of self-realization, and goals of participation and identity formation (1995, p. 446).

As new social movements make legislative inroads, the value of aggressive mimicry as a strategy will increase for those opposed to these organizations. If successful, the opposition would be able to lay claim to some of the rewards garnered by movement members, or the oppositional factions would be able to take the organization’s attention away from the goals of the movement, as exemplified by Wise Use and the environmentalists. Already there is controversy over who are the “true” or “rightful” heirs to the legacy of some of these movements, as can be seen in the current debate over who is considered “disabled,” in response to the compensation given to those who qualify under the Americans With Disabilities Act. Other examples of identity conflicts concern whether transgendered and bisexual people should be included in the fight for “gay rights,” or whether a person with distant ties to a tribal community should being allowed to claim “Native American” status. Being able not only to obtain a valued identity, but also to take it away from those who have earned its rewards, makes aggressive mimicry appear to be a potentially lucrative strategic response. Although this case study does not lend itself to further generalization, with additional research it could be used to mark a trend in identity co-optation that may go along with the rise of new social movements. CONCLUSION The choice to appropriate aspects of the Environmental Movement benefited the Wise Use movement in a number of ways. Co-opting the structure of environmental groups not only allowed Wise Use to present itself as an advocacy group (as

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opposed to industry representative), but it also made plausible that natural resource organizations could put concern for the welfare of the populace above industry interests. The use of scientific environmental discourse, such as organism and species, permitted Wise Use to question what it saw as a privileging of nature over people by expanding the “natural” to include human activities. Finally, the aggressive mimicry of environmental identity allowed Wise Use to call into question environmental ideology in the United States. Whether or not the general population believed the constructs presented by Wise Use, the environmentalists felt the need to respond to the characterizations of themselves as local outsiders, government insiders, elitists, and people haters. Having accomplished these goals, the Wise Use movement, at least by name, began to fade from headlines at the end of the 1990s. The height of Wise Use’s influence as a coalition appears to have been the 1994 Republican “Contract With America,” which mirrored some of the tenets of the Wise Use movement’s agenda. By 1997, attendance at the Wise Use Leadership Conference was significantly reduced, drawing fewer than 100 people (“On the Wane,” 1997). As the Clearing House for Environmental Advocacy and Research explained, some of the largest grass-roots organizations, People for the USA! most notably, have lost its funding and become “irrelevant.” The online newsletter was quick to point out, “This doesn’t mean however, that the backlash is dead. It just means there are now different tactics employed by the people with the most power, money and interest in attacking environmentalism” (2002). Jennifer Hattam (2001), writing for the Sierra Club, acknowledged that Wise Use has friends in the White House, but few “foot soldiers.” Not unlike Ronald Reagan’s administration satisfying the needs of the Sagebrush Rebellion, Wise Use members may have chosen to relax their vigilance, having been emboldened by the Republican sweep, and further reassured by the election of George W. Bush and the appointment of Gale Norton as the Secretary of the Interior, that their work was now in the hands of the federal government. Again, as in the Reagan era, the environmentalists have been galvanized in their fight against the loss of their legislative accomplishments and the further desecration of the environment. As Alexander Cockburn noted, “The environmentalists see … rich opportunity with Gale Norton, graduate of the Mountain State Legal Foundation, an anti-environmental think tank based in Denver, Colorado, headed by James Watt, greatest fundraiser for environmental causes in our history” (2001, para. 6). The difference between the fight against James Watt and the one in the first years of the 21st century appears to be that the contest must now be held in a post-Wise Use era. Since environmentalists began influencing legislation in 1970, the movement has claimed to be both a “social movement” and an “interest group” (Scholsberg & Dryzek, 2002, p. 787). Robert Gottlieb maintained, “Environmentalists were activists and lobbyists, system opponents and system managers” (as quoted in Schlosberg & Dryzek, p. 793). The most troublesome outcome of the Wise Use

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attack on environmentalism may be that it made environmentalists’ “claim to represent the larger public interest … politically insecure” (Brick, 1995, p. 19). In 1995, Brick noted that environmentalist organizations were portrayed primarily as “special interest groups” (p. 19). This identity reconstruction, among other reasons, may be why Schlosberg and Dryzek discerned a split in environmental activism in the 1990s, with some organizations (predominantly local and regional groups) choosing to disassociate themselves from government. These activists have attempted to “influence from the outside” by continuing to construct the terms of environmental discourse, forming and taking part in nongovernmental organizations (from local citizen groups to global forums on the environment), and seeking to create a counterculture that instills fear of political instability in government organizations (Schlosberg & Dryzek, 2002). Whether the environmental movement can again establish its “balance” between social movement and special interest lobby remains to be seen. As illustrated by the new coalitions being formed with diverse organizations like those housed under Environmental Justice, the “average American” making up the “grassroots” that environmentalists will attempt to enlist in order to “speak for the people” without hesitation may be very different than the ones envisioned by Wise Use. REFERENCES Alliance for America. (2003). Mission statement. Retrieved January 13, 2003, from http://www.allianceforamerica.org/mission.htm Arnold, R. (1979a, February). Score: Environmentalists 6 industry 2. Logging Management, pp. 22–27. Arnold, R. (1979b, April). Assessing environmentalism: Know your opponent. Logging Management, pp. 34–38. Arnold, R. (1979c, June). Taking the offensive. Logging Management, pp. 25–29. Arnold, R. (1979d, August). History, the unconventional weapon. Logging Management, 29–33. Arnold, R. (1980a, February). How environmentalists propaganda works. Logging Management, 34–38. Arnold, R. (1980b, April). Defeating environmentalism. Logging Management, 37–42. Arnold, R. (1980c, June). The outlook. Logging Management, 36–44. Baumann, D. (1991, May/June). Wise guise. Sierra, 67, 70–76. Blackman, T. (1991, December). Species act threatens homes for everyone. Forest Industries, 5. Blue Ribbon Coalition. Mission statement. Retrieved January 13, 2003 from http:// www.sharetrails.org/index.cfm?page=12 Brick, P. (1995, October). Determined opposition: The Wise Use movement challenges environmentalism. Environment, 37, 17–42. Brulle, R. (1996, February). Environmental discourse and social movement organizations: A historical and rhetorical perspective on the development of U.S. environmental organizations. Sociological Inquiry, 66, 58–83. Buechler, S. M. (1995). New social movement theories. The Sociological Quarterly, 36, 441–464.

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Byrnes, P. (1992, Summer). The counterfeit crusade. Wilderness, 55, 29–32. Campbell, J. A. (1986). Scientific revolution and the grammar of culture: The case of Darwin’s Origin. Quarterly Journal of Speech, 72, 351–376. Campbell, K. K. (1973). The rhetoric of women’s liberation: An oxymoron. Quarterly Journal of Speech, 59, 73–86. Cathcart, R. (1972, Spring). New approaches to the study of movements: Defining movements rhetorically. Western Speech, 36, 82–88. Center for the Defense of Free Enterprise. Wise Use: What do we believe? Retrieved January 13, 2003, from http://www.cdfe.org/wiseuse.htm Clearinghouse on Environmental Advocacy and Research. Current anatomy of the backlash. Retrieved October 5, 2002, from http://www.clearproject.org/aboutblash.html Cockburn, A. (January 29, 2001). Different players, same game. Nation, 272, 8. Retrieved January 18, 2004, from Academic Search Elite database. Demo, A. T. (2000, Spring). The Guerilla Girls’ comic politics of subversion. Women’s Studies in Communication, 23, 133–156. Egan, T. (1991, December 19). Fund-raisers tap anti-environmentalism. The New York Times, p. A18. Egan, T. (1995, May 15). Unlikely alliances attack property rights measures. The New York Times, p. A18. Ehrlich, P. R., & Ehrlich, A. H. (1996). Betrayal of science and reason: How anti-environmental rhetoric threatens our future. Washington, DC: Island Press. Fritsch, J. (1996, March 25). Nature groups say foes bear friendly names. The New York Times, p. A1. Gottlieb, A. M. (Ed.). (1989). The Wise Use agenda: The citizen’s policy guide to environmental resource issues. Bellevue, WA: Free Enterprise Press. Also available at www.wildwilderness.org/wi/point22.htm Hattam, J. (2001, May/June). Wise-Use movement, R.I.P.? Sierra Magazine, 86, 20–22. Helvarg, D. (1994). The war against the greens: The Wise-Use movement, the new right, and anti-environmental violence. San Francisco: Sierra Club Books. Hopey, D. (1995, February 28). Groups ‘green’ names fade under scrutiny. Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, p. A6. Ingalsbee, T. (1996). Earth First! activism: Ecological postmodern praxis in radical environmentalist identities. Sociological Perspectives, 39(2), 263–277. Jackson, R. R. (1992, September). Eight-legged tricksters. Bioscience, 42, 590–599. Retrieved August 15, 2003, from Academic Search Elite database. Jorgensen-Earp, C. R. (1990, Winter). The lady, the whore, and the spinster: The rhetorical use of Victorian images of women. Western Journal of Speech Communication, 45, 82–98. Lewis, T. A. (1995). Cloaked in a wise disguise. In J. Echeverria & R. B. Eby (Eds.), Let the people judge: Wise Use and the private property rights movement (pp. 13–20). Washington, DC: Island Press. Long, K. (1991, December 21). A Grinch who loathes green groups. Toronto Star, p. D6. Maughan, R. (1995, Spring). A Wise-Use decoder guide. Earth Island Journal, 10, 27–30. Maughan, R., & Nilson D. (1993, April). What’s old and what’s new about the Wise Use movement. Paper presented at the Western Social Science Association Convention, Corpus Christi, TX. Retrieved March 26, 2001, from www.nwcitizen.com/publicgood/ reports/maugham.htm Muir, S. A., & Condit, C. M. (1997). Difficult questions about environmental communication. Critical Studies in Mass Communication, 14, 374–377. Murphy, J. M. (1997). Inventing authority: Bill Clinton, Martin Luther King, Jr., and the orchestration of rhetorical traditions. Quarterly Journal of Speech, 83, 1–19.

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The National Coalition for Public Lands and Natural Resources. People for the West! Retrieved September 28, 1997, from http://www.pfw.org/ On the wane or growing pains? (1997, July/August). National Parks, 71, 16–19. People for the West! People for the West! in the News. Retrieved March 24, 1999, from http://www.pfw.org/indnews.html Ramos, T. (1995). Wise Use in the West: The case of the Northwest timber industry. In J. Echeverria & R. B. Eby (Eds.), Let the people judge: Wise Use and the private property rights movement (pp. 82–118). Washington, DC: Island Press. Sale, K. (1993). The green revolution: The American environmental movement 1962–1992. New York: Hill and Wang. Schlosberg, D., & Dryzek, J. S. (2002). Political strategies of American environmentalism: Inclusion and beyond. Society and Natural Resources, 15, 787–804. Sellars, R. W. (1997). Preserving nature in the national parks: A history. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press. Snow, D. (1994, May/June). Wise Use and public lands in the west. Utne Reader, 63, 70–78. Stapleton, R. (1992, November/December). Greed vs. green: How the Wise Use movement employs corporate money and questionable tactics to stake its claim to public lands. National Parks, 66, 32–37. Stewart, C. J., Smith, C. A., & Denton, R. E., Jr. (2001). Persuasion and social movements (4th ed.). Prospect Heights, IL: Waveland Press. Switzer, J. V. (1997). Green backlash: The history and politics of environmental opposition in the U.S. Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner. Udall, S. L., & Olson, K. (1992, July 27). Perspective on environmentalism: Me first, God and nature second. Los Angeles Times, p. B5. Warrick, J. (1997, June 17). A dust-up over air pollution standards. Washington Post, p. A9. Wise move? (1996, February 19). Online NewsHour. Retrieved September 28, 1997, from http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/environment/wise_use_2-19.html

CHAPTER TWO

The Deliberative Ideal and Co-optation in the Georgia Ports Authority’s Stakeholder Evaluation Group

Caitlin Wills Toker Gainesville College

For decades, the position of American citizens in the arena of environmental decision making has been a concern of researchers and practitioners working in this area (Fiorino, 1990; Vaughan & Seifert, 1992). Most early attempts to include the public in decisions followed the decide- announce-defend trajectory outlined in the National Environmental Policy Act of 1970, which interested citizens voiced concerns during formal public meetings or written comment periods on decisions already made by scientific experts and political elite. This approach was based on an adversarial model of democracy, which assumed that citizens were in constant conflict and required educated representatives to secure and protect their interests (Bessette, 1994; Dryzek & Braithwaite, 2000; Mansbridge, 1983). Ideally, public comment was meant to ensure that decisions were in line with citizens’ interests and concerns. However, in the scientifically based environmental arena, citizens rarely participated because they felt either technically incapable or frustrated at the primarily public relations function of these efforts (Katz & Miller, 1996). As a result, many researchers and practitioners have started promoting more direct citizen involvement in environmental decisions (John & Mlay, 1999; Juanillo & Scherer, 1995; Renn, 1992). This new approach adopts qualities of ideal citizen participation as explicitly outlined by Jurgen Habermas and more recently expanded by deliberative democratic theorists (Bohman, 1997; Gastil, 1993; Gutmann & Thompson, 1996). Although advocates disagree over the potential problems solved by deliberative democracy and the necessary procedural guidelines, deliberative approaches are united by the general qualities of equal participants and free and open deliberation to reach a decision in the interest of all (DeGreiff, 2000; Hauptmann, 1999; Mansbridge, 1983). Deliberative democrats believe that through this deliberative process, “political 19

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outcomes will secure broader support, respond more effectively to the reflexively held interests of participants, and generally prove more rational” (Dryzek & Braithwaite, 2000, p. 242). Results that are more rational and acceptable make this form of citizen participation very attractive in the conflict-ridden realm of environmental decision making. At the same time, critics “caution against regarding [the deliberative approach] as a cure all for the ills of contemporary politics” (Button & Mattson, 1999, p. 609), and instead promote undertaking practical research that considers “how deliberation in fact works” (Mendelberg & Oleske, 2000, p. 174). This is especially true in the context of environmental decision making, in which control of participation processes by project sponsors can result in its co-optation (Elliot & Marsh, 2001; Murdock & Sexton, 1999; Spyke, 1999; Waddell, 1996). The Georgia Ports Authority’s (GPA) decision to create the Stakeholder Evaluation Group (SEG) in order to deal with opposition to its proposed deepening project provides a case in which the feasibility of the deliberative model can be explored in a practical context. GPA announced its plans to deepen the shallow and sandy Savannah River in their Tier I Draft Feasibility and Environmental Impact Study [FS/EIS] issued in May 1998. The river had been deepened 4 years earlier, but the GPA reasoned that changes in the shipping industry called for additional depth. The usually supportive community responded with opposition to the news that the harbor would be deepened by 8 more feet. The GPA sought to address community concerns by creating the SEG in January 1999 to include representatives from government, business, and the public directly and equally in a deliberative process of identifying the project’s environmental impacts and formulating a plan to alleviate them. From the very beginning, the GPA drew on the ideals of the deliberative model to create and shape the SEG. Yet, rather than producing a group that approached these ideals, the GPA’s articulation of the deliberative vocabulary yielded a process by which the lead agency co-opted the terms to maintain control. According to Bruner and Oelshlaeger (1998), the key to exploring any environmental debate is to delve into the way in which the terms of the deliberation are defined. By exploring the “public vocabulary” (Condit & Lucaites, 1993, p. XIV) that GPA officials used to craft a “shared rhetorical culture” (p. XIV) and shape group “needs and interests” (p. XII), this chapter considers the ways in which the GPA co-opted the deliberative process. Exploration of how communication models actually work through case studies such as these is essential to developing environmental public participation research. Environmental issues are complex and characterized by conflict (Juanillo & Scherer, 1995). For this reason, theory cannot be developed detached from an understanding of these situations (Krimsky & Golding, 1992). Instead, a “combination of theory and intuition” (Daniels & Walker, 2001, p. XIV) can improve communication and public participation. This case study seeks to contribute to this type of research. Careful analysis of the function of the deliberative approach

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in the SEG yields suggestions for the use of the theory in public participation research and practice. The argument unfolds with an overview of the deliberative model and its use in the realm of environmental decision making. Next, the GPA’s harbor deepening project is introduced. Then, the concept of public vocabulary is outlined and the GPA’s discourse rhetorically explored. After three ways in which the GPA co-opted the deliberative vocabulary are discussed, the results of co-optation and its impact on the use of the deliberative model in environmental decision making are considered. THE DELIBERATIVE IDEAL The ideals espoused by the theories of deliberative democracy are rooted in concepts of ideal public deliberation outlined in Jurgen Habermas’ public sphere. Through observation of the European bourgeois in the mid-19th century, Habermas determined that a forum of like- minded citizens debating equally in an open public arena provided the truest representation of public opinion. In this context, he observed that issues of power and money were minimized as the force of the best argument guided deliberation (Habermas, 1992). Through such rationally motivated debate, citizens transcended personal interests to reach a mutual understanding of the general public that was established through consensus (Habermas, 1992). Habermas concluded that this process was direct democracy in its most perfect form. He extracted conditions of equality, open access, rational argument, mutual understanding, and consensus that would guarantee rational public debate, and developed them into his theory of the ideal speech situation (Habermas, 2001). He also argued that although the conditions of the ideal speech situation were “not the conditions under which arguments actually occur” (Habermas, 2001, p. 102), in order to improve deliberation, arguers should act as if this fictitious situation were real. Recognizing that “the conception of the public sphere is central to contemporary prospects of deliberation,” (Habermas, 1996, p. 33), many democratic theorists in the past 10 years followed a deliberative turn. Various theorists chose different parts of Habermas’ initial ideas to develop, making deliberative theories extremely fragmented. However, according to Hauptmann (1999), all remain united by a few simple characteristics. First, all share the essential goal of outlining “the conditions under which political decisions should be considered legitimate expressions of the collective will of the people” (p. 2). Second, all argue that this project must be “grounded in deliberation” (p. 8). Gastil provided a definition of deliberation as “discussion that involves judicious argument, critical listening, and earnest decision making” (1993, p. 24). Finally, “all maintain that deliberation must be governed by a set of basic principles woven into fair procedures in order for it to yield legitimate collective decisions” (Hauptmann, 1999, p. 8).

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Although the basic principles vary across theories, two qualities of deliberation—equality and free and open deliberation—remain fairly consistent. Equality among citizen participants is required for deliberation (Bohman, 1997; Button & Mattson, 1999; Gastil, 1993). Equality means that participants are free of any external or internal coercion (DeGreiff, 2000). Every individual has an equal opportunity to join the group. Once inside, each individual also has “an equal opportunity to be heard, to introduce topics, to make contributions, to suggest and criticize proposals” (DeGreiff, 2000, p. 3) and to shape or alter group policies. In this sense, the “deliberative playing field is nearly level” (Gutmann & Thompson, 1996, p. 133). Also important is free and open deliberation. Deliberation is free and open if “group members have equal and adequate opportunities to speak, neither withholding information nor verbally manipulating one another, and are able and willing to listen” (Gastil, 1993, p. 6). Arguments are based on “general principles” (Mendelberg & Oleske, 2000, p. 170). Topics of deliberation are limited to those in the “equal interests of all” (DeGreiff, 2000, p. 3) rather than personal interests. As deliberators offer their perspective, propose ideas, and make compromises based on the better argument, they forge a “collective will, a joint intension” (Richardson, 1997, p. 338). According to Bessette, the concept of collective will has also been described as “‘the good of the whole,’ ‘the public weal,’ ‘great and national objects,’ ‘the great and aggregate interests,’ ‘the national prosperity and happiness,’ ‘the great interests of the nation,’ ‘the common interests,’ ‘the common good of society,’ and ‘the comprehensive interests of the country’” (1994, p. 27). In short, a sense of what is good for the public as a whole is forged through equal participants debating openly without constraints. For many deliberative theorists, consensus only is the mechanism through which this notion of the common good can be fixed. According to Barber, in a consensus decision, citizens come to “common agreement on an issue, values, or the direction of a future course of action” (1984, p. 611). Once some type of general agreement is reached, members express consent by “head nodding, wiggling fingers, [or] verbally assenting” (Gastil, 1993, p. 51). No objection results in a consensus decision (Mansbridge, 1983). Gastil contended that this type of decision making is most suited to deliberative groups, because it ensures that every member has an equal input into decision making and provides the “surest safeguard against the unequal distribution of power” (1993, p. 51). Others have asserted that voting and bargaining are also possible decision methods (Dryzek & Braithwaite, 2000). Habermas accepted negotiating and bargaining as long as they are precursors to rationally motivated consensus. Proponents of deliberative processes agree that whether by consensus or voting, decisions determined by deliberation prove more rational, more representative, and more acceptable to the citizenry (Dryzek & Braithwaite, 2000; Mendelberg & Oleske, 2000).

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The potential of deliberative approaches to secure rational and fair decisions led to their promotion in a number of practical settings. In practice, the concept of community dialogue reflects deliberative ideals. According to Weeks (2000), these “community dialogue[s] are broadly inclusive, providing practical opportunities for all citizens to participate” (p. 3). Citizens receive “extensive information about the nature of the policy problem, [engage] … in the same problem solving context as elected officials, and use rigorous methods of analysis” (p. 3). Increasingly, researchers and practitioners working in the environmental decision making arena have adopted this notion of the community dialogue as a remedy to traditional decide-announce- defend methodology enacted by public hearings and comment periods. According to Crowfoot and Wondolleck (1990), these efforts stress “collaboration among contending interest groups instead of adversarial relationships [and] consensus decision making rather than judgments by authorities” (p. 1). Participants are described in this literature as being stakeholders. Stakeholders are active because they are “willing and able to play a much more active role in environmental issues” (Environmental Protection Agency [EPA], 1997a, p. 2) than are average citizens. Stakeholders are also equal “partners … in the overall process” (Spyke, 1999, p. 17). These active and equal participants enter into a “collaborative framework” (EPA, 1997b, p. 3). They engage in a “community dialogue” (Farrell, 1999, p. 4). Through deliberation in this open forum, stakeholders “find there is more common ground than expected” (John & Mlay, 1999, p. 368). In this sense, the deliberative process “changes the scope and nature of the concerns that enter into decision-making, as well as the weights those concerns are given” (p. 20). Such discussions produce a sense of the common good or the “general public opinion” (Hendee et al., 1976, p. 134) of a particular community on a certain issue. Once a sense of the general climate of public opinion develops, it acts as a “basis for compromise of views and a workable consensus” (Committee on the Impact, 1979, pp. 53–54). Consensus, then, is often the ultimate goal of these processes. Because “all involved agree that everyone’s concerns have been heard” (Spyke, 1999, p. 12), consensus decisions are inclusive, representative, and more rational than are decisions led by experts or by majority. As described, these deliberative community dialogues seem to represent a remedy for the traditionally elite-dominated realm of environmental decision making. This form of participation includes citizens equally with scientific and political elites in decision making. Privy to the same information, citizens should become less intimidated and less frustrated as they participate in these processes. However, despite the attractiveness of this approach for the environmental context, a number of critics have cautioned against its absolute adoption. First, critics find fault with the guiding ideals of deliberation. Check argued that deliberative theories “impose simplistic meanings on complex acts” (2001, p. 335). Others likewise question the “validity of the ideal” (Spragens, 1998, p. 7). Opponents also interrogate the feasibility of its practical implementation. McCombs

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and Reynolds (1999) questioned the practicality of face-to-face deliberation in a country with a large and continually expanding population. Gastil concluded that deliberative democracy “works better in theory than in practice” (1993, p. 52). Bohman “consign[ed] the ideal of deliberative democracy to the status of patently unfeasible utopian dreams” (1997, p. 7). Finally, Chambers (1996) questioned “whether undistorted communication is a realistic model of democratic legitimacy and dispute resolution” (p. 97). Critics also mistrust the individual qualities of equality, free and open deliberation, and consensus. Opponents contend that equality among participants is nearly impossible to achieve due to “asymmetries of power and expertise within the structures of modern, bureaucratized politics” (Button & Mattson, 1999, p. 610). Over time, knowledge- and seniority-based hierarchies will emerge, resulting in some participants possessing less power than others (Gastil, 1993). McLeod et al. (1999) contended that even if every participant has an equal chance to speak, “there is no guarantee that all views will be accorded equal attention and fair representation in the policy decisions that will emerge from deliberation” (p. 767). The feasibility of open and free deliberation is another questionable ideal. Uncontrolled deliberation can produce long, circular meetings (Gastil, 1993; McCombs & Reynolds, 1999). Participants can waste hours debating solutions to “ill defined problems” (McCombs & Reynolds, 1999, p. 82). At the same time, claims of “universal access and open debate” (Asen, 1999, p. 116) often guarantee exclusion by identifying certain subjects and communication styles as acceptable. According to Edelman (2001), the notion of the common good, which is the end product of such debate, is actually a “comforting illusion” (p. 83) and is often used by those in power to define acceptable and unacceptable actions. Such definitions establish the authority and legitimacy of leaders and stifle social change by producing the uncritical acceptance of the status quo (Edelman, 1964). Consensus is a similarly difficult ideal to obtain. Mansbridge argued that consensus can only work as a decision method when individuals share many common interests. In order for consensus to be reached, citizens’ diverse natures must be ignored (Button & Mattson, 1999). In addition, in a context of conflict, insistence on consensus leads to “conservative stalemates, unhappy compromise, or acquiescence under social pressure” (Mansbridge, 1983, p. 263). Such critiques in light of the increasing popularity of deliberative methods for public involvement have led a number of scholars to call for further study of this approach in practice (Button & Mattson, 1999; Mendelberg & Oleske, 2000; Weeks, 2000). They are specifically concerned that project leaders might co-opt these forms, using them to achieve their own goals under the guise of superior public involvement (Gastil, 1993). Because project proponents are often those who design, implement, and facilitate these processes in environmental decision making (Lange, 1998), this context is extremely suitable for the examination of the deliberative model in practice.

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THE GEORGIA PORTS AUTHORITY AND THE HARBOR DEEPENING PROJECT A good case in which to explore the practicality of deliberative norms as a framework for environmental public participation is the Georgia Ports Authority’s Stakeholder Evaluation Group. The harbor has been Savannah’s driving economic force for over 200 years (Bell, 1977). Yet, the Savannah River was naturally more of a “shallow river” than a deep harbor (Southern Environmental Law Center [SELC], 2000, p. 1), which made it prime for countless engineering efforts to transform it into a 42-foot-deep, world- class harbor. Due to the city’s economic dependence on the port, residents generally supported the GPA’s drive to craft a suitable harbor and shrugged off the stench of increasingly polluted water as simply “the smell of money” (Russell & Hines, 1992, p. 175). Past support made the GPA fairly confident that citizens would eagerly endorse the 1999 deepening project. In early 1997, when the GPA began to suggest the need for further deepening, the agency rooted its argument in the need for continued economic prosperity. The GPA cited record tonnage in 1997 (GPA, 1998a). It also suggested that the port “directly or indirectly support[ed] 80,100 jobs, [was] responsible for $1.8 billion in wages, generate[d] $23 billion in revenue and account[ed] for $585 million in state and local taxes annually” (“Project Should Proceed,” 1998, p. 1). The agency then reasoned that Savannah must keep up with two shipping trends in order for prosperity to continue. The first was that shipping lines were increasingly using large container ships rather than bulk shipping methods. Containers were metal boxes of varying size that could be lifted from the ships and placed directly on the backs of trucks or railcars. These ships were larger than conventional models and were often constrained in the Savannah harbor. For example, “in 1996, more than 52 percent of container ships serving the Port of Savannah were operationally constrained due to inadequate channel depth” (Krueger, 1998, p. 5). Problems included maneuverability and time lost waiting for the appropriate tidal stage (GPA, 1998a). The GPA forecasted that these ships were continuing to get bigger. In 1998, 15 of the super ships “135 feet wide and 1,043 feet long—longer than the Eiffel Tower is tall … [with] a draft of 47.5 feet but requir[ing] … drafts up to 52 feet” (Seabrook, 1998, p. 1B) were in service. Given this situation, officials stated that “increased channel depths [were] necessary to accommodate the increasing drafts of these vessels” (GPA, 1998a, p. 9). Larger ships meant the increased consolidation of trade routes. The GPA claimed that industry analysts predicted that consolidation would lead to the emergence of three mega hub ports on the Eastern Seaboard, with all other ports becoming secondary feeder ports. With New York and Virginia securing the first two positions, Savannah was “locked in a battle with Charleston, S.C. to be named

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the third” (Schmitt & Guidera, 1998, p. 1). Because the Charleston port was currently undergoing expansion, GPA officials predicted that Savannah would definitely fall to feeder port status without deepening (“Project Should Proceed,” 1998, p. 1). Also, because Savannah was still trying to reclaim its position as the number one port on the South Atlantic coast (which it had lost in 1986), port officials deemed this situation to be particularly urgent (Wooten, 1996). These two reasons provided the basis for the GPA to perform a study in March 1997 on the feasibility of deepening, as directed by the Water Resources Development Act [WRDA] of 1986. The GPA released its $5 million Tier I Draft FS/EIS in May 1998. In the two “half foot thick” (Krueger, 1998, p. 2) documents, the GPA concluded that deepening the harbor to 50 feet was environmentally feasible and would produce $35 million in annual net benefits. In response, city, federal, industry, environmental, and public representatives voiced a variety of economic and environmental concerns, which caused the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) to extend its traditional 30-day comment period by 2 weeks. Although the GPA gained the support of Congressman Jack Kingston and local businesses with its economic argument, the SELC refuted the agency’s economic claims (“Politics and Water,” 1998). As a representative of the Nature Conservancy and the Coastal Environmental Organization (CEO), the SELC asserted that the GPA’s rush to get the project approved in the WRDA of 1998 produced a “fast track” mentality, which resulted in a flawed economic analysis (Seabrook, 1998, p. 1b). The SELC claimed that the GPA overestimated the need for deep draft harbors and failed to consider the interplay between the Savannah Port and other harbors (Taxpayers for Common Sense, 1999). These miscalculations made the projected $35 million in annual net benefits grossly incorrect. Environmentally, resource agencies such as the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (FWS) and the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) joined with local environmental groups to express a number of concerns. First, they claimed that the drastic mitigation measures outlined in the study would facilitate “increased salinity and decreased dissolved oxygen in the river, causing catastrophic collapse of the striped bass fishery, and the habitat for the endangered short nosed sturgeon, while also causing the loss of over half the tidal freshwater marsh which forms the centerpiece of the Savannah National Wildlife Refuge” (SELC, 1998, p. 1). The striped bass, the short-nosed sturgeon, and the Wildlife Refuge had all experienced tremendous impacts in the past due to high pollution levels and river engineering efforts (Krueger, 1998; Seabrook, 1998). FWS biologist John Robinette argued that this project might ultimately destroy all three by producing “a disaster that cannot be reversed” (Krueger 1998, p. 1). The second environmental concern was water quality. The availability of freshwater was a historically sensitive issue in this area. In the early 1970s, environmental advocate Ralph Nader criticized Savannah for its practices of dumping untreated sewage in the river and allowing local industry to dispose of wastewater similarly (Fancher, 1976). Georgia was also experiencing a drought and engaged in “water

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wars” with Alabama and Florida over water rights (“Politics and Water,” 1998). City officials were troubled that increased salinity caused by deepening would limit their ability to provide the citizens of the city with freshwater. Local industry also worried that this possibility might increase their water treatment costs (Krueger, 1998). In addition, beneath the river was a freshwater aquifer that was already experiencing saltwater intrusion as a result of unlimited withdrawal in past decades. Further deepening might puncture the protective layer and cause further contamination (Cochran, 1998). Opponents were dissatisfied with the GPA’s position that these issues should not be considered until the design phase of the project. The final environmental concern was sand erosion at Tybee Island. The home of Savannah’s only beach, the small island was “shrinking” as a result of past harbor projects (Kreuzwieser, 1995, p. 30). Residents were concerned that further deepening would increase erosion. Maintaining that “there’ll be plenty of time to address concerns about the project” (Sechler, 1998, p. 1), the GPA outlined no plans for Tybee Island in its mitigation effort. In light of these reactions to the deepening project, the GPA decided to temper the proposed dredging depth from 50 to 48 feet and created the Stakeholder Evaluation Group (SEG) as a mechanism to ensure “two-way communications” (GPA, 1998b, p. 1) between the GPA and interested parties throughout the project process. Specifically, the group was to represent organizational interests in developing “an environmentally acceptable mitigation plan” (GPA, 1998b, p. 25) for the project. Membership was open to “government, public and private” organizations (GPA, 2000, p. 4). However, the GPA did specifically identify groups such as the EPA, FWS, and Georgia Environmental Protection Division (EPD) as necessary participants. Although 1998 passed without congressional authorization, the GPA continued to move forward with the project and convened its first SEG meeting in January 1999. PUBLIC VOCABULARY Critical to any theory of democratic debate is the language used to constitute that theory and its practice (Mendelberg & Oleske, 2000). As Condit and Lucaites (1993) noted, these terms create a “shared rhetorical culture” (p. XIV) or a public vocabulary that rhetors speaking from its tradition employ as they attempt to direct the community in the negotiation of “common needs and interests” (p. XII). This vocabulary includes the “full complement of commonly used allusions, aphorisms, characterizations, ideographs, metaphors, myths, narratives and topoi or common argumentative forms” (p. XII). According to Condit and Lucaites (1993), “the central, organizing elements for any rhetorical culture” (p. XIII) are ideographs. McGee described an ideograph as an “ordinary-language term found in political discourse, … a higher order abstraction representing collective commitment … to a normative goal” (1980/1995, p. 452), such as liberty or equality. Condit and Lucaites (1933) also noted that, in

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addition to “represent[ing] in condensed form the normative, collective commitments of the members of the public … [ideographs] typically appear in public argumentation as the necessary motivations or justifications for actions performed in the name of the public” (p. XIII). In this sense, they act as “the moral of the story in public political narratives” (Condit, 1987, p. 3). Public political narratives are “story forms” that recount “a thing being done or supposed to have been done, which is adapted to persuade” (Condit, 1987, p. 4). When they gain “persuasiveness and force among an active plurality of persons in an active discourse group” (p. 4), they are transformed into public political myths. Myths are narratives that provide an outline for acting in the present; however, they differ from simple narratives because they link action in the present to prior events of significance to the community (Duncan, 1962). By framing future actions as consistent with the traditions of the past, myths work to strengthen these traditions (Edelman, 2001). Political myths derive their meaning from characterizations. Characterizations are “universalized descriptions of particular agents, acts, scenes, purposes or agencies which, when they become culturally accepted as accurate descriptions of a class can be labeled character-types” (Condit, 1987, p. 4). Examples of character types in American culture are “‘Boy Scouts,’ ‘politicians,’ and ‘the South’” (p. 4). Through public argument, ideographs, myths, characterizations, and other elements of a public vocabulary interact to develop a set of relationships that provide “a rhetorical foundation of public value” (Condit, 1987, p. 3) for a particular community. This rhetorical foundation reflects, guides, and creates community life (Burke, 1969; Duncan, 1962). Specifically, Edelman (2001) argued that politicians and society’s powerful groups use myths, slogans, and key terms to assert authority and to legitimate actions. Use of the public vocabulary enables powerful groups to define and maintain the status quo and thwart social change (Edelman, 1964). These are not malicious actions, but instead are merely the function of language in society. Katz and Miller (1996) maintained that rhetorical ideological control by governmental figures is particularly prevalent in the environmental participation context. Through their study of the low-level radioactive waste siting controversy in North Carolina, these researchers found that the authority’s statutory control of the process enabled them to assert ideological control through definition of group language. This notion of public vocabulary and its use by groups to exert control of the social order provides a useful lens for considering the workings of deliberative ideals within the SEG. Examination of the ideographs, myths, and characterizations used by the GPA can reveal the agency’s attempt to create, shape, and reinforce the social order within the SEG. CO-OPTATION OF THE DELIBERATIVE IDEAL During the second meeting, in February 1999, group facilitator and GPA consultant Morgan Reese established a deliberatively based vocabulary as the framework

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for SEG discussion. Rees characterized stakeholders as equal with “everybody” having the “chance to speak up and be heard” (SEG, 1999a, side 1). This characterization acted as a foundation for a narrative of deliberation in which “everyone has a chance to say what their concerns are” (side 1). Because this outline was grounded in the tradition of deliberative action, it had mythic force. With “everything on the table” (side 1), the group could debate to reach a mutual understand of the general public opinion. He also identified “consensus … not majority vote” (side 5) as the motivating force of group action. In this sense, the term consensus acted ideographically to motivate the group to make decisions on certain issues. In the discussions and the meetings that followed, members of the GPA adopted the deliberatively based vocabulary in order to control and shut down deliberation, to bring legitimacy to their decisions, and to confuse the topic under debate. Co-optation of this vocabulary functioned to maintain GPA control over the project. Controlling Deliberation Rather than using deliberation “as a means by which multiple subjects can advocate divergent, substantive positions” (Schwarze, 2001, p. 193), lead agencies often view participation as a means to control and shut down debate over projects. The GPA used the deliberative vocabulary toward this end, to move discussion away from issues they did not want to address. During the February 1999 meeting, GPA project director Larry Griffen demonstrated this strategy in his presentation on the activities occurring in the next three phases of the project: the design phase, the environmental analysis phase, and the cultural resources phase. He first overviewed the detailed design phase, which contained an economic analysis, some environmental analysis such as sedimentation effects, and engineering studies. He described how this phase was separate from the environmental analysis, which was the domain of the SEG. Griffen argued that some engineering, economic, and environmental studies that were of concern to a few SEG members were considered part of this detailed design phase and were not “deemed … to be facilitated or necessary to be facilitated” (SEG, 1999a, side 2). In this sense, topics such as the Tybee Beach evaluation and the project economic analysis, were part of this “unfacilitated process—however … [with] a very strong public input component” (side 2) and not part of the SEG process. He then defined the second phase of environmental evaluation, which involved determining environmental impacts and creating a mitigation plan. This was the domain of the SEG. Within this phase, Griffen identified only “four or five … fundamental elements” (side 2) such as “dissolved oxygen and salinity and chlorides” (side 2). Griffen next defended his position, arguing that this categorization of topics was necessary to produce “the most desirable design—balancing the environmental issues, balancing … the market, economics that go with it and balancing constructability, three parts—environmental, market economics and construct-

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ability” (side 2). Finally, he briefly described the third phase, which involved the creation of a plan dealing with cultural resources, such as artifacts from the Civil War, that were located near the harbor. The culmination of this three-part effort was a final environmental impact statement and report. By characterizing certain topics as suitable for certain phases, Griffen outlined an agenda for the SEG and in turn violated the myth of group practice in which all stakeholders would come together to reach decisions on research topics through free and open deliberation. Environmental activist Ben Brewton questioned Griffen’s narrative: “You’re explaining parts of the project that are beyond the scope of the stakeholders’ group?” (side 2). In an effort to stop Brewton from continuing to question what specific issues were on the SEG agenda, Griffen rearticulated the deliberative myth of group process. He stated, “I’m explaining the parts of the project in its total environment. I’m going to come back. I’m gonna go through this and then I’m gonna come back and show where the SEG, the things that this group has up to this time decided is a part of what they want to do” (side 2). Here, Griffen drew on the myth of group process by which the SEG defined issues of interest through free and open deliberation. However, this was only the second group meeting and the SEG had not yet outlined topics of interest. Those Griffen defined were issues that dealt with endangered species and water quality, which were considered important by the GPA. However, by drawing on the group myth, Griffen framed these issues as being previously identified by the SEG. According to Edelman (2001), asserting myths of group practice often functions to forestall critical questioning by subordinates. The GPA-hired facilitator Morgan Rees then reasserted “what was said in the formation of the group … any issue that the SEG wants to bring to the table is a legitimate issue for the SEG” (SEG, 1999a, side 2). Here, Rees emphasized that discussion was open to any issue identified by the SEG. His “chronic repetition” (Edelman, 1964, p. 124) of the deliberative myth further lessened the chance of critical questioning by Brewton. This was certainly the effect that repetition of the deliberative myth had on Brewton as he stated, “It just appeared to me that many of these things [considered not appropriate for the SEG] are the very essence of what the stakeholders are” (SEG, 1999a, side 2), but also conceded and said, “OK, We’ll listen” (side 2). Brewton accepted Griffen’s clear violation of the myth of group practice because he associated it with deliberative ideals. The myth provided by the GPA acted as a “comforting illusion” (Edelman, 2001, p. 129) that the SEG would have control over their agenda through free and open deliberation, despite evidence to the contrary. In this sense, GPA officials’ use of the myth of free and open deliberation functioned to control debate by causing Brewton to acquiesce. The GPA also used this strategy to stop deliberation when SEG members attempted to address specific issues of concern. One of the major topics of SEG concern was Tybee Beach. During meetings, a number of members pushed for

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the inclusion of this issue in SEG deliberations. For example, during the July 1999 meeting, Bill Farmer—a Beach Committee leader and Tybee resident— noted: As you remember, at the last SEG meeting, a study proposal was provided to the GPA for accomplishment. Shortly after the meeting last month the Corps of Engineers put out a document that had thirteen technical comments on the proposed study. And in those thirteen technical comments there was an introductory paragraph that said that these comments should be addressed for the Corps to consider the statement of work to be technically adequate. Uh, that raised a little alarm in committee as to whether the proposed study needed to be revised … the impression we had was that the proposed study would get a cost and a schedule and some contract language attached to it … but as it turns out that there’s another document that needs to be developed that’s a task statement and that task statement then has the contract language and the schedule and the cost attached to it … and that task statement is the thing that will be contracted to be accomplished. (1999b, p. 9)

In this long description of the study recommendation process, Farmer presented a narrative clearly inconsistent with a deliberative myth in which all group members contributed to the formation of consensus decision. In actuality, the GPA and Corps controlled debate and decision making on the topic by continually sending the study proposal back to the SEG. Probing for the actual narrative of group practice, Farmer explicitly questioned: “Is it true that this is the sequence that we develop a study and it goes to the Ports Authority and they develop a task statement … and that becomes part of the contracting document? Is that routine for all the studies?” (SEG, 1999b, p. 9). The GPA did not want the SEG to research this topic because the agency felt it was out of the scope of the project. In turn, in order to stop debate, the GPA’s representative Larry Keegan drew on the deliberatively based myth of group process. He commented that the proposed study would still “stay with the intent and the content of what was recommended to be done” (p. 9). By adding that the proposal would stay consistent with the SEG recommendation, Keegan attempted to frame the activities of the Tybee Beach issue as being consistent with a myth of decision making through free and open deliberation. Questioning whether reality reflected this myth, Farmer then asked, “So, uh, if it’s incomplete then you all make it complete until it comes back to the SEG for concurrence again is that correct? Or do you just go ahead and do it, is that correct?” (p. 9). If the GPA went “ahead” and performed the study, this process would clearly be inconsistent with a myth in which all stakeholders had input into decision making. If, on the other hand, it came back to the SEG for approval, stakeholders would have an equal say in the study process, making it consistent with a deliberative vocabulary.

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Rees quickly interjected and attempted to reassert the notion that all members were participating in decision making. He began, “If there’s any thought to changing the recommendation, we would certainly come back to the SEG and work that out” (p. 9). Because the proposal would come back to the SEG, all members would have an equal say in the decision. Although such reassurance often results in acquiescence of subordinates, Farmer continued to assert that this “thing called a task statement” (p. 9) was not needed for the recommendations of the Modeling Technical Review Group and Striped Bass studies. Here, Farmer accused the GPA of treating the Tybee Beach study differently than others. This suggestion hinted at a GPA-controlled process in which issues that were deemed important were easily approved and issues deemed less important were not. It also suggested unequal treatment of SEG members. Studies suggested by committees that the GPA deemed technically valid were easily approved. Although deputy director David Schaller started to distinguish between other research and the Beach Erosion study, Morgan Rees interrupted to reestablish the deliberative myth. He argued, “All I can say is that the Beach Erosion Committee, this group, dealt with that issue, made the recommendation, SEG approved it, and maybe you don’t agree with it but that’s what happened” (p. 11). By once again arguing that group decision making occurred through a process of open deliberation, free from GPA coercion, Rees provided a comforting illusion for the group. This final appeal again functioned to control debate by producing an uncritical response from Farmer. Another topic that the GPA did not want to be included in SEG discussion was the web site. The GPA sponsored the SEG web site and did not want to be held responsible for random postings by any member. They suggested instead that a members-only listserv be used to hold pre- and postmeeting discussions. Open access is a requirement for deliberation. Limiting access in any way, through either a listserv or a controlled web site, is a clear violation of the deliberative myth. In discussion of the web site during the December meeting, the Communication Committee pushed for the site to be used as a medium for internal communication, and for it to be open to posting by all group members. The Communication Committee introduced discussion with the specific recommendation that “individual members could post information that could be viewed and copied or printed by other members as they wished” (1999c, p. 131). Brewton went on to explain how “all members … [could] post information they deemed relevant” (p. 132) and “anyone whether they were a member of the SEG, a member of the public or the media, or other agency people … [could] visit and view it” (p. 134). This practice ensured that all stakeholders could be equal and active as they participated in an open forum of virtual deliberation. In response to this suggestion, the GPA expressed concern that people reading the web site might attribute personal opinions of the SEG members to the GPA. Surprisingly, some stakeholders agreed with the GPA and argued for either a listserv of “similar people [who] have similar interests” (p. 134) or a web site with

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restricted access. Here, stakeholders argued for a type of exclusion and control that was consistent with GPA behaviors. According to Edelman (2001), subordinates often attempt to adopt the “values, manners and behaviors of their superiors” (p. 46) in order to gain authority and status. Working to reestablish the deliberative myth, deputy director David Schaller quickly stated, “We don’t know quite frankly what the membership of the SEG is. And for that reason, you know, you can’t confine it just to those of us who say, yeah, I want to be a part of that because there may be any number of people who want to be part of that” (SEG, 1999c, p. 157). In this quote, Schaller characterized SEG stakeholders as people who wanted to be included in deliberation. By reasserting the deliberatively based characterization of equal stakeholders who actively want to be included in the process, Schaller worked to reassert the deliberative myth. Schaller then reinforced the deliberative vocabulary by stating, “We do not have a plan to modify the first consensus drawn with respect to what goes on the Web page that the Georgia Ports Authority is sponsoring … any information that needs to be dispersed, there are any number of ways to get it dispersed to any number of people” (SEG, 1999c, p. 160). Schaller drew on the ideographic force of consensus to support his refusal to adapt the web site. The term consensus represented the authority of an SEG decision. Because the SEG had already reached a rational, logical consensus regarding what would be displayed on the site, there was no need for further discussion. By using the deliberative vocabulary in this discussion, David Schaller created a comforting illusion that group process followed deliberative ideals. Satisfied that group practice reflected these ideals, members became uncritical and argued that “we’ve spent far too much time on this issue” (p. 184) and questioned “is there an easy way to solve this” (p. 184). In the end, members called for the committee to “retrench … and see what we can come up with” (p. 191). In this sense, Schaller’s use of the deliberative vocabulary worked to shut down debate on the web site. Achieving Legitimacy According to Elliott and Marsh (2001), “Sponsors often envision the primary objective of the stakeholder process as building legitimacy for the proposed project rather than interactively working out problems that emerge from the project” (p. 382). Agencies often mistakenly view stakeholder processes as a means to justify or legitimize projects in the eyes of other agencies as well as public opponents (Schwarze, 2001). Edelman argues that powerful groups in society often legitimate actions by framing them as consistent with popularly held values or public opinion (2001). The second way the GPA co-opted the group vocabulary was by using it to legitimate their actions by framing these actions as consistent with deliberative ideals.

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The first discussion in which the GPA spoke to legitimate their actions was the SEG agenda. During the February 1999 meeting, SEG members were reviewing the January meeting minutes and noticed that the GPA had promised a document that they did not deliver. In January, SEG members had expressed concerned that the public comments submitted during the first Tier I comment phase would not be addressed, so they asked the GPA for a listing of them. Facilitator Rees argued that those comments had been “adequately addressed” and listed the endangered short-nosed sturgeon, striped bass, salinity, dissolved oxygen, and chloride distribution as the five principal topics suitable for the SEG agenda. Stakeholders argued that the fact that many groups felt Tier I comments were not “adequately addressed” was the very reason for the SEG’s existence. After a long debate, stakeholders demanded that the GPA produce a document identifying each public comment and the way in which each was addressed. The GPA offhandedly agreed. While reviewing the January minutes in February, SEG members asked the GPA for this document. One in particular noted the importance of the public comments in determining which “issues should be included in this effort by the SEG” (1999a, side 1). This statement suggests active stakeholders who could determine what issues should be included through rational thought and debate. In response, GPA representatives demonstrated their unwillingness to make this document available to the SEG. First, GPA consultant Ed Modzelewski asserted that the public comments contained in the Tier I EIS were “historical issues” that would require “going back and looking at the comments on the Tier I EIS” (side 1). The GPA project director Larry Keegan then outright refused to produce the document, asserting, “It would take an awful lot of time for us to go through and cover what is in Appendix H of the final EIS. We are not prepared to do that today” (side 1). The GPA’s refusal revealed the control and authority that the agency had over the process. Such control by the lead agency contradicts the myth of group process and the characterization of stakeholders as equal participants. In order to legitimate this clear violation of deliberative ideals, facilitator Rees stipulated “all of those issues will get adequately addressed” (side 1) through a process of rational deliberation in which all topics would be “put on the table” (side 1). He then concluded that because the group followed this type of rational debate, “production of a large document or a lengthy briefing at this time by GPA may be premature” (side 1). Here, Rees framed the GPA’s clear assertion of power and control of the SEG agenda as consistent with the deliberative process, because rational debate would ensure that all issues would be addressed. According to Edelman, superiors often legitimate actions by framing them as being consistent with society’s accepted beliefs (2001). This was the case with the SEG, as Rees’ attempt functioned to legitimate the GPA’s actions. Members’ acceptance of Rees’ attempt was affirmed by the call from other group members to move on and not worry about it because “the function of this group is to identify all possible issues and then figure what to do about them … [r]ather than have GPA explain why they did this or that” (1999a, side 1). Finally, Rees let the GPA “off the hook” (1999a, side 1) for producing the document.

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As the project moved closer to realization, the GPA’s ability to legitimize their decisions became more important. In the winter months of 1999, the Water Resources Development Act was under debate in both the U.S. House and Senate. This bill authorized the project contingent on the completion of the full-scale environmental study that was currently underway by the SEG, and also gave the Corps of Engineers, the U.S. Department of Commerce, the U.S. Department of Interior, and the EPA “kill switch authority” (Dewig, 1999, p. 2) if they thought the project was inadequate in any way. The heightened power of these agencies and the increased likelihood that the project would be constructed made it essential for the GPA to appear legitimate. Another discussion in which the GPA worked to legitimate its actions with the use of the deliberative vocabulary was the overview of the SEG recommendation process covered by Morgan Rees in the July 1999 meeting. With the aid of a decision tree, Rees ambiguously described the process: Whatever concepts we apply to make a judgment about how we deal with the SEG recommendations the bottom line is that it’s pressable …. I don’t want to draw a line that says here is one side and here’s the other because there are significant gray areas and part of the purpose that I think of this group is to help us to work through those gray areas and figure out what’s the right thing to do in everybody’s interest. (1999b, p. 4)

In this description, stakeholders were characterized as equal participants working through questionable areas and reaching a sense of the public interest. Rees further asserted that the SEG’s consensus decisions had authority. He stated, “the bottom line is that GPA no matter what the SEG is concerned about if it has to do with the quality of the Savannah River Estuary we will work with the SEG to find a way to fix the problem” (p. 4). In essence, the GPA would listen to and consider the SEG’s decisions. As Rees continued, however, he revealed inconsistencies between practice and deliberative meanings. By simply presenting this information on the GPA’s judgment criteria, Rees suggested that he had a different status than other members. He also distinguished between recommendations of “mandatory” studies that were “part of the direct effects, part of the indirect effects” which would be an “easy choice” and those on the “other side” that were “clearly external” (p. 4). By defining the studies that the GPA deemed important as mandatory and the others as “clearly external” and “silly” (p. 4), Rees attempted to establish issues that were acceptable and those that were extreme. According to Edelman (2001), such clear distinction between centrist and extreme actions is a strategy often used by superiors. Edelman contended that this strategy works to heighten inequalities between superiors and subordinates because it grants superiors control over defining what is acceptable and unacceptable action. Here, Rees demonstrated such control as he defined GPA-approved studies as an “easy choice” and others issues that might be

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of interest to the SEG members as “silly.” Rees’ control and assertion of power on behalf of the GPA was clearly inconsistent with the deliberative ideals of equality and open deliberative process. Following this reveal, Rees drew on the deliberative vocabulary to legitimate this practice. He argued that “quite a few accomplishments … have been made in a cooperative way and really do reflect the decision philosophy that we have been talking about” (SEG, 1999b, p. 4). In essence, he attempted to assert that the process of identifying issues that he had described followed the deliberative, cooperative myth of group process. He then went on to recount specifics instances of where “you folks all came together” (p. 4) suggesting equality between members. These instances included ironing out the details of the operating guidelines where “people said to me, we are never going to get through this and we did” (p. 4). Rees also described how “the SEG has recommended to the GPA and recommended to itself an established list of committees” (p. 4) and that there were “a number of tasks that have been worked through and agreed to, by the SEG” (p. 4). In these descriptions, Rees illustrated a process where equal stakeholders joined together to produce decisions on committees and tasks that were in the public interest. By drawing on the deliberative ideals, Rees worked to legitimate the GPA’s control of the recommendation and study process. Because the notion of public interest also has tremendous weight in American society, emphasis that decisions were in the public interest functioned to further legitimate the GPA’s actions (Edelman, 2001, p. 56). Stakeholders accepted Rees’ attempts to legitimate the GPA’s actions and deliberation moved to another topic. Confusing the Issues According to Asen (1999), project sponsors also often use the deliberative process to confuse the issues and keep opponents wrapped in deliberation. The final way in which the GPA co-opted the deliberative vocabulary was by using it to confuse the issues under debate. The GPA first used this strategy during a debate over the equality of stakeholders started by Ben Brewton during the February meeting. Brewton questioned why he and his consultant were told “that neither of us were considered to be on the list or part of the committee” (1999a, side 3) when they attempted to attend the Modeling Technical Review Group meeting. Such exclusion contradicted with a characterization of stakeholders as equal. He then directly questioned the consistency of this practice with the group vocabulary by asking, “I’d like to know why we seemingly have an open invitation for participants yet when we asked that we were told that no we weren’t participants or members of the committee?” (side 3). In this question, Brewton highlighted the inconsistency between the articulated characterization of stakeholders as equal and the practice of differentiating some as members of a specialized committee while excluding others.

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Brewton’s recognition of this inconsistency initiated a series of attempts by other stakeholders to explain the distinction. First, GPA representative Charles Griffen began to recognize explicit inequalities between stakeholders as he asserted that there was a “difference between the deliberations of the SEG and the deliberations of the technical task people” (side 3). However, he quickly caught his slippage from the standard stakeholder description and responded that this was “not the forum in which I care to deal with it” (side 3). Facilitator Rees then joined the discussion with a self-described “off topic” statement. He described the SEG forum as “open … public involvement government” (side 3) in which “you can’t close the door to anybody” (side 3). Because all were allowed to participate in deliberation, a stakeholder in this myth was “anybody … [who] wants to join” (side 3). In essence, all who wanted could represent their interest equally in this forum. Rees then questioned whether “If you folks want to close the door on somebody and you can reach consensus on that then you can do that …. I’m just telling you my reaction of having done a lot of public involvement that I’m not sure if I could close the door on anyone or on any issue” (side 3). Here, Rees reasserted qualities of openness, equality, and representation. He emphasized the ideograph of consensus to highlight these ideals. This move functioned to confuse or mystify the issue under discussion as stakeholders began to question Rees on the general definition of stakeholder rather than specific stakeholders’ inclusion in the MTRG meetings. For example, Chris Schubert asked Rees, “anybody that’s showed up … that’s the group?” (side 3). Rees then led stakeholders down this discussion path with the statement, “We probably need to develop a process so that we make sure that we do meet the state and federal agency coordination meetings act through this stakeholders process” (side 3). With this comment, he moved the group to a discussion of the SEG’s purpose. This was not the only issue in which GPA representatives used deliberative terms to confuse the issue. During the same meeting, a debate over the mission statement of the group drew a similar response. Bill Farmer suggested “taking out” the word estuary from the mission statement. The word estuary limited the SEG’s scope of work to the Savannah River and left out impacts on nearby places such as Tybee Island, Fort Jackson, and the city of Savannah. Because the GPA wanted to control what issues the SEG addressed, a GPA representative denied this request with the statement, “We would like to study it some more” (side 4). The GPA project director Charles Griffen likewise asserted, “We’d like to evaluate the proposal and get back to the SEG” (side 4). By not allowing the SEG to change the term, the GPA attempted to limit the scope of the SEG’s work. This practice was at odds with the deliberative myth in which the participants determined their agenda through free and open deliberation. Schaller then explained that “it is possible with the SEG if they choose to propose a broadening of the scope of the work that needs to be undertaken can certainly do that and take a vote and recommend that component to the Georgia Ports Authority as a project component”

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(side 4). In this statement, Schaller attempted to reenact the notion that the stakeholders could broaden their scope and determine issues through rational deliberation. At the same time, underlying this statement was the suggestion that it would be the GPA who made the final choice. The inconsistency between articulations of the group myth and suggestions of a GPA-controlled process caused stakeholders to question whether they had “control of this language or are we just making a recommendation to GPA to change it” (side 5). This line of debate threatened to expose the actual control the GPA exerted over the stakeholder process. Rather than admitting that every decision by the SEG was ultimately a recommendation, Facilitator Rees drew on the deliberative vocabulary to confuse the issue. He used Schaller’s suggestion for voting as a springboard to assert that SEG “decisions will be by consensus … not by majority vote” (side 5). Rees then provided the following description of this process: “Kind of poll the group if everybody’s comfortable, you know if there’s a general feeling that it’s ok then everybody says ok and if there’s not a general feeling that it’s ok somebody says no it’s not ok, we haven’t reached consensus and then we revisit them on issue by issue basis” (side 5). Here, Rees captured the rational deliberative process. Equal participants joined together easily in agreement to determine public opinion or interest. The final goal of this rational process was consensus. Rees described consensus as “the mutual feeling that all concerns have been addressed” (side 5). The final consensus decision that resulted would be all-inclusive, because it “captured all” (side 5) concerns. As the end result of a process of equal and representative stakeholders coming together to deliberate freely and openly to reach agreement, consensus symbolized the culmination and the realization of the stakeholder ideal. According to Edelman, those in power often use key terms, such as consensus, to link actions to long-standing traditions (1964). Here, Rees described the deliberative myth of group process and emphasized the key term of consensus to link SEG activities with this tradition. Stakeholders were comforted by this illusion and allowed Rees to lead them to a discussion of consensus. In this sense, the deliberative vocabulary worked to confuse the issue under debate. The final example when deliberative meanings confused debate occurred during the December 1999 meeting over the issue of consensus. This issue, which seemed to be a topic of continuous deliberation, arose during discussion over whether the web site should be open for posting. FWS representative Sam Drake attempted to bring this debate to a close with a “motion” (1999c, p. 143) for members to vote on the recommendation. Sam Booher then seconded Drake’s recommendation. By calling for a vote, stakeholders were enacting majority vote rather than consensus decision making. Evoking the deliberative vocabulary, Rees stated, “While we have started doing that sort of thing in the last couple of meetings, I would just like to point out that that is contrary to the operating guidelines that have been adopted to reach these decisions as a matter of consensus and not through a motion and second and vote process” (p. 146). Again, Rees asserted the

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ideograph of consensus to link group actions with deliberative ideals. He offered the term consensus to represent this comforting illusion. Recognizing that they were not following rational consensus-oriented deliberation, stakeholders worked to fulfill this illusion and followed Rees to a discussion of consensus. For example, Ben Brewton asked, “How can we determine when we have a consensus” (p. 146). His poor understanding of consensus indicated that although this term had acted as the motivation for group action for 11 months, decisions obviously were not determined this way. The new facilitator, Ben Dysart, also got entrenched in the debate over consensus. He noted, “Having motions, seconds, calling the questions and so forth is not consistent with a consensus seeking body. However, there is—typically you ask for an expression of support for something. You can either have all smiley faces indicating it, raising hands or whatnot” (p. 148). During the next few minutes, deliberation continued on the topic of how consensus is determined, with a variety of stakeholders offering suggestions such as: “Why you don’t say who opposes it?” (p. 149) or “A more appropriate question would be how many people can’t live with that?” (p. 149). Exasperated, FWS representative Mitch King interjected: I’m beginning to thank myself for being absent, and my opinion here is that this is ludicrous. The bouncing around of discussions here is not—it’s not what this group should be doing. We have a situation that needs to be resolved. I don’t know what the solution is, but I know that the bantering I’ve seen over the last ten minutes has not been very productive. (p. 171)

Finally, facilitator Dysart concluded that this topic “needs additional work” (p. 193). Brewton likewise suggested that the Operational Guideline Committee review the definition of consensus. In short, Rees’ interjection of the deliberative meaning for consensus worked to confuse the issue under debate. Stakeholders became tangled in debate over the meaning of consensus instead of making a decision on the status of the web site. At the same time, this discussion clearly revealed that consensus decision making proved unfeasible for the SEG. CONCLUSION The Function of the Deliberative Model in the SEG The GPA co-opted the deliberative vocabulary to maintain control of the SEG process. Representatives used the deliberatively based characterization of stakeholder, myth of group process, and guiding ideograph of consensus to link group practice with this tradition while they controlled deliberation, legitimated their actions, and confused the issues. Although stakeholders noticed inequalities and the GPA’s attempts to take control of research and decisions, participants ultimately

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accepted the comforting illusion of a decision process guided by rational debate that the GPA offered. According to Edelman (2001), tradition-based terms often cause the acquiescence of the public because they limit perceptions of alternative possibilities. Left with no alternative but to follow an imperfect but deliberative process, stakeholders followed the lead of the GPA. This assessment is supported by news articles that reported stakeholders “questioning their role” (Krueger, 1999a, p. 3) and feeling “stalemated” (Krueger, 1999b, p. 1) and “frustrated” (Krueger, 1999a, p. 2) at the progress. Despite this dissatisfaction, only one group actually sought other possibilities for participation. The Fish and Wildlife Service withdrew from the SEG 2 days after the first meeting (Krueger, 1999a). Although agencies such as the Georgia Environmental Protection Division and the National Marine Fisheries Service “hinted” that they too “may withdraw from the SEG process” (Krueger, 1999a, p. 2), they never did. Instead, the stakeholders followed the lead of the GPA, which through their strategic use of the deliberative vocabulary kept the SEG stagnant, “stuck in its own mud … slow to move beyond its own in-fighting” (Krueger, 1999c, p. 1) for the next 6 months. Although internally the GPA’s use of a deliberative vocabulary kept potential project opponents amiable to the project, externally the GPA used the deliberatively based SEG to legitimate their project. At the end of March, the Georgia General Assembly approved $10.8 million dollars for the Savannah Harbor Deepening, marking a major “disappointment” for environmentalists (Williams, 1999, p. 1). In April, the United States Senate passed the Water Resources Development Act of 1999. This legislation authorized $230 million for the Savannah project, with the federal government responsible for $145 million and GPA responsible for the other $85 million. House approval quickly followed. The House and Senate versions of the bill contained differences that had to be “ironed out,” and both included “language conditioning authorization of the project on completion of a study analyzing the impact on the environment of dredging the river channel to various depths between 42 and 48 feet” (Pace, 1999, p. 2). This study was the domain of the SEG. Lawmaker’s requirement of the SEG process as a criteria for project authorization made it essential for the GPA to prove to the Corps of Engineers, the Department of Commerce, the Department of Interior, and the EPA (Dewig, 1999) that environmental issues would be considered completely by the SEG. Thus, the GPA continued to point to the deliberatively based SEG to gain legitimacy for their project, despite the fact that the SEG was “inch[ing] ahead” (Krueger, 1999d, p. 1) in their mission. In turn, in early August, both the Senate and the House approved conference committee reports making the Water Resources Development Act of 1999 a law. Although project construction was contingent on the SEG study and approval by the administrator of the EPA, the Secretary of the Army, the Secretary of the Interior, and the Secretary of Commerce, this move made the project appear inevitable. In fact, the Secretary of the Army issued a favorable report on the project as early as September. The only protest that the law drew was a pledge from the Fish and Wildlife Service to rejoin

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the SEG. In fact, many SEG members claimed that they were “OK with it” (“Ports Authority Gets Favorable,” 1999, p. 2). Deliberation continued to be characterized by episodes of “contentious bantering” (Krueger, 1999d, p. 1) until debate over a study landed the SEG on the front page of the local Savannah paper in February 2000. The Corps was charging that the GPA should pay for a SEG-recommended study of striped bass spawning in the Front Savannah River. The GPA, on the other hand, claimed that this issue was related to the tide gate that the Corps had built in the 1970s and should be their financial responsibility. A few days later, on February 24, the groups Taxpayers for Common Sense (TCS) and the National Wildlife Federation (NWF) issued a scathing critique of Corps directed navigation projects (TCS, 2000). Their report suggested that “hundreds of billions of dollars have been spent on projects that create navigable waterways for traffic that never comes, flood control that encourages people to develop high risk areas, and ports that destroy wide expanses of the nation’s estuaries and coastlines” costing both “the taxpayer and the environment” (Shade & DeGennaro, 2000, p. A11). TCS and NWF categorized the Savannah project as “No. 8 on a list of the 10 worst U.S. Army Corps of Engineers projects” (“Environmental, Taxpayer Groups,” 2000, p. 1) because it demonstrated “pork-barrel spending and bad environmental policy” (p. 1). The NWF followed up the report with a lawsuit accusing the Army Corps of Engineers of violating “the National Environmental Policy Act, the Water Resources Development Act of 1986, the Fish and Wildlife Coordination Act and the Magnuson-Steven Fishery Conservation and Management Act” (“Savannah River: Group Sues,” 2000, p. 1) by issuing approval on the Savannah project before the proper environmental studies were complete. The South Carolina Coastal Conservation League, the South Carolina Wildlife Federation, and the Coastal Georgia Center for Sustainable Development partnered with the NWF to file the suit on March 14th, 2000, under the council of the Southern Environmental Law Center. The groups claimed that the Corps “had bulldozed the Savannah Harbor project through on the promise it would study the environmental impacts later” (Seabrook, 2000, p. 3B). They hoped to force the “Corps of Engineers to reverse its approval until it fully reviews the environmental and economic issues” (Krueger, 2000b, p. 1). At the same time, concerned local citizens began attending the SEG meetings demanding answers (Krueger, 2000a). Then, in September, a group of citizens with the name the Water Solutions Network called on Georgia citizens to sign a water Bill of Rights in protest of the project (Krueger, 2001). However, these efforts of protest and litigation were too little, too late. Through the deliberative SEG, many opponents had become committed to the process and the project had achieved enough legitimacy to ensure appropriation. In essence, instead of opening the project to a variety of perspectives, this stakeholder process actually lead to greater control by GPA. The possible use of stakeholder efforts to feign innovation while working to reinforce status quo control by more powerful

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organizations is one major shortcoming of these approaches (Dawson, 1994; Edelman, 2001; Felski, 1989; Fraser, 1992). Because the deliberative model can function in this way, perhaps scholars should reconsider whether it should be promoted as the superior remedy for stakeholder involvement in environmental decision making in every situation. A Combination of Approaches The context of environmental decision making has been characterized as an arena in which private citizens struggled with scientific, technical, and political elite to gain a voice in decision making (Katz & Miller, 1996; Waddell, 1996). Emotional appeals clashed with scientifically based arguments as groups disagreed and the elite asserted their authority (Amy, 1987; Stearney, 1996). Although the deliberative process was recommended as a method to finally erase inequalities, assertions of power, and disagreements, these continue to be issues in participation processes, as the case of the SEG demonstrates. SEG stakeholders increasingly recognized inequalities between members, the controlled nature of decision making, and the difficulty of consensus in a decision process characterized by disagreement despite the GPA’s continued assertions of equality, open deliberation, and consensus. Paradoxically, the GPA’s co-optation of the deliberative vocabulary intensified the inequality of participants and the controlled nature of the process, and made consensus decision making more difficult. A number of scholars studying the practice of deliberative democracy support the finding that the norms of equality, free and open deliberation, and consensus are unworkable in a representative political system satiated with conflict and control (Button & Mattson, 1999; Mansbridge, 1983). Barber challenged the reality of “a community that does not oppress individuals, a consensus that respects dissent, a politics that recognizes conflict without enthroning permanent factions, and a democracy that is strong without being unitary, rich without being fragmented, and consensual without being monolithic” (1984, p. 114). Because the present context of politics does not support a strict deliberative approach to democracy with the assumptions of equality, open deliberation and consensus, these scholars suggested a more flexible approach (Elliot & Marsh, 2001). In her study of democratic procedures, Jane Mansbridge concluded that “no polity ever institutes a purely unitary or purely adversary decision-rule” (1983, p. 164). According to Mansbridge, groups shift back and forth among the unitary procedures of equality, open deliberation, and consensus and adversarial power plays, bargaining, and majority voting, depending on whether interests are similar or in conflict. Mansbridge suggested a greater attention to the complexities of the situation by “using consensus best to maintain unity, encourage a search for the best possible solution, and nourish concern for the welfare of both the group as a whole and its individual members” (p. 268) on issues of agreement. In contrast, on issues of disagreement and conflict, assertions of authority by more powerful

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members should be assumed and bargaining and majority vote should be used. Fraser (1992) likewise promoted “arrangements that permit the contestation among a plurality of competing publics” (p. 125). Mansbridge’s suggestion is one possible solution for the dilemma of public participation in environmental decision making. Stakeholder processes could include a variety of forums with diverse formats. In situations of agreement, equality could be assumed and consensus decision making could be used in open stakeholder workshops and meetings. In situations of disagreement and conflict, bargaining and assertions of power could be assumed. Detailed methods of voting would be the decision method used in debates (Barber, 1984; Gastil, 1993). In these moments, all participants, even lead agencies, could be considered advocates of particular positions with no party being neutral or removed from the process (Schwarze, 2001). This suggestion for a combination of approaches is significant because it calls for innovation and experimentation rather than simply holding fast to one method or another. It also would require much more attention and investigation into the specifics of stakeholders’ opinions and the complexity of the situation. Researchers Daniels and Walker (2001) highly supported such flexibility and “situation-specific responsiveness” (p. 264). In the case of the SEG, this approach would benefit the group by facilitating unity and cohesion and fostering the search for the best possible solution in moments of agreement while also helping to realistically accommodate assertions of inequality, control, and conflict that result from moments of disagreement. It would give the participants greater ability to protest the project, and make it more difficult for the GPA to simply point to the SEG to achieve legitimacy. Ultimately, it would change the status quo of agency control. Empowering Participants If environmental participation adopts this more flexible approach, less powerful stakeholders would need to be empowered to respond appropriately to moments of conflict, assertions of power, and co-optation by project sponsors and scientific, technical and political elite more experienced in arguing. The case of the SEG clearly demonstrated this fact. Although stakeholders recognized that group practice did not follow deliberative norms, they failed to argue their concern persuasively. They were comforted by the illusion of deliberation that the GPA provided. This result might have been avoided if participants had been aware of the criticism and use of persuasive rhetoric. Such awareness may also help when stakeholders are called to argue their points in moments of conflict when a more flexible approach is adopted (Mansbridge, 1983). A number of scholars support the notion that in order for stakeholders to gain a voice in environmental decision making, they must become more comfortable with rhetoric (Eckersley, 2001; Ivie, 1998; Mansbridge, 1983). Professional communicators could be employed at the beginning of any participation process to

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train all less experienced participants (Page, 1996). These communicators could not only teach participants how to “communicate with each other, but also assemble, explain, debate, and disseminate the best available information and ideas” to their constituents (Page, 1996, p. 5). Because the strategies of narrative and metaphor are particularly powerful in the context of environmental decision making, training could focus on helping participants understand and master their use (Bessette, 1994; Bruner & Oelshlaeger, 1998; Killingsworth & Palmer, 1992). Such training would empower participants to persuasively present their arguments in moments of conflict and consensus. As “passionate and intelligent deliberators” (Urbinati, 2000, p. 10), participants could act as forceful advocates of their particular positions at one moment and then as solid foundations of support for common interest in the next. Rhetorical understanding would also help participants become better critics of others’ arguments. Stakeholders with such rhetorical ability may be more likely to take advantage of opportunities to express their perspectives, have confidence in their arguments, and be sufficiently persuasive to influence the process. In essence, it would help stakeholders secure the trinity of voice, standing, and influence that Senecah (2001) argued are essential to a healthy stakeholder process. A healthy process is, after all, the main goal of both public participation research and practice. REFERENCES Amy, D. (1987). The politics of environmental mediation. New York: Columbia University Press. Asen, R. (1999). Toward a normative conception of difference in public deliberation. Argumentation and Advocacy, 35, 115–129. Retrieved June 17, 2002, from proquest.umi.com Barber, B. R. (1984). Strong democracy: Participatory politics for a new age. Berkeley: University of California Press. Bell, M. (1977). Savannah. Savannah, GA: Historic Savannah Foundation. Bessette, J. M. (1994). The mild voice of reason. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Bohman, J. (1997). Deliberative democracy and effective social freedom. In J. Bohman & W. Rehg (Eds.), Deliberative democracy (pp. 321–348). Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. Bruner, M., & Oelshlaeger, M. (1998). Rhetoric, environmentalism and environmental ethics. In C. Waddell (Ed.), Landmark essays on rhetoric and the environment (pp. 209–225). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. Burke, K. (1969). A rhetoric of motives. Berkeley: University of California Press. Button, M., & Mattson, K. (1999). Deliberative democracy in practice: Challenges and prospects for civic deliberation. Polity, 31, 609–637. Chambers, S. (1996). Reasonable democracy: Jurgen Habermas and the politics of discourse. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press. Check, T. (2001). Argument schemes and corporate apologia: Public hearings on the Exxon Valdez oil spill. In M. F. Aepli, J. W. Delicath, & S. P. Depoe, Proceedings of the 6th biennial conference on communication and the environment (pp. 334–343). Cincinnati, OH: Center for Environmental Communication Studies. Cochran, C. (1998, December 30). Water cap may dry up county’s residential growth. Savannah Morning Electronic Edition News. Retrieved February 15, 2002, from www.savannahnow.com

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Committee on the Impact of Maritime Services on Local Populations. (1979). Public involvement in maritime facility development. Washington, DC: National Academy of Sciences. Condit, C. M. (1987). Democracy and civil rights: The universalizing influence of public argumentation. Communication Monographs, 54, 1–18. Condit, C. M., & Lucaites, J. L. (1993). Crafting equality: America’s Anglo-African word. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Crowfoot, J. E., & Wondolleck, J. M. (1990). Environmental disputes: Community involvement in conflict resolution. Washington, DC: Island. Daniels, S. E., & Walker, G. B. (2001). Working through environmental conflict: The Collaborative Learning approach. Westport, CT: Praeger. Dawson, M. C. (1994). A black counterpublic? Economic earthquakes, racial agenda(s), and black politics. Public Culture, 7, 195–223. DeGreiff, P. (2000). Deliberative democracy and group representation. Social Theory and Practice, 26, 397–415. Retrieved June 17, 2002, from proquest.umi.com Dewig, R. (1999, May 3). Dredging proposal worries lowcountry officials. Carolina Morning News Electronic Edition. Retrieved November 11, 2000, from www. savannahnow.com Dryzek, J. S., & Braithwaite, V. (2000). On the prospects for democratic deliberation: Values analysis applied to Australian politics. Political Psychology, 21, 241–266. Duncan, H. D. (1962). Communication and social order. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press. Eckersley, R. (2001). Ecofeminism and environmental democracy: Exploring the connections. Women & Environments International Magazine, 52/53, 23–26. Retrieved June 17, 2002, from proquest.umi.com Edelman, M. (1964). The symbolic uses of politics. Urbana: University of Illinois Press. Edelman, M. (2001). The politics of misinformation. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. Elliott, M., & Marsh, E. (2001). Evaluation of stakeholder involvement in Project XL. In M. F. Aepli, J. W. Delicath, & S. P. Depoe, Proceedings of the 6th biennial conference on communication and the environment. (pp. 380–385). Cincinnati, OH: Center for Environmental Communication Studies. Environmental Protection Agency. (1997a). Annual report on reinvention. Retrieved February 15, 2001, from www.epa.gov Environmental Protection Agency. (1997b). Managing for better environmental results. Retrieved February 15, 2001, from www.epa.gov Environmental, taxpayer groups blast dredging project. (2000, March 3). The Associated Press State & Local Wire. Retrieved June 17, 2002, from web.lexus-nexus.com Fancher, B. (1976). Savannah: A renaissance of the heart. Garden City, NY: Doubleday. Farrell, R. T. (1999). Aiming for excellence: EPA’s commitment to innovation. ECOStates. Retrieved November 11, 2000, from www.epa.gov Felski, R. (1989). Beyond feminist aesthetics: Feminist literature and social change. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press. Fiorino, D. J. (1990). Citizen participation and environmental risk: A survey of institutional mechanisms. Science, Technology and Human Values, 15, 226–243. Fraser, N. (1992) Rethinking the public sphere: A contribution to the critique of actual existing democracy. In C. Calhoun (Ed.), Habermas and the public sphere (pp. 109– 142). Cambridge, MA: MIT. Gastil, J. (1993). Democracy in small groups: Participation, decision-making and communication. Philadelphia: New Society. Georgia Ports Authority [GPA]. (1998a, July). Savannah Harbor expansion feasibility study report. Savannah, GA: GPA Public Affairs Division. Georgia Ports Authority. (1998b, December). Public meeting slides. Retrieved November 11, 2000, from www.sysconn.com/harbor

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Georgia Ports Authority. (2000). The harbor deepening planning process. Harbor Expansion Questions & Answers. Retrieved November 11, 2000, from www.gaports.com. Gutmann, A., & Thompson, D. (1996). Democracy and disagreement. Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press. Habermas, J. (1992). Further reflections on the public sphere. In C. Calhoun (Ed.), Habermas and the public sphere (pp. 425–451). Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. Habermas, J. (1996). Paradigms of law. In M. Rosendfeld & A. Arato (Eds.), Habermas on law and democracy: Critical exchanges (pp. 18–33). Berkeley: University of California Press. Habermas, J. (2001). Truth and society: The discursive redemption of factual claims to validity. In B. Fultner (Ed.), On the pragmatics of social interaction (pp. 93–103). Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. Hauptmann, E. (1999). Deliberation=legitimacy=democracy. Political Theory, 27, 857–872. Retrieved June 17, 2002, from proquest.umi.com Hendee, J., Lucas, R., Tracy, R., Staed, T., Clark, R., & Stankey, G. (1976). In J. Pierce & H. Doerksen (Eds.), Water politics and public involvement (pp. 125–144). Ann Arbor, MI: Ann Arbor Science. Ivie, R. L. (1998). Democratic deliberation in a rhetorical republic. The Quarterly Journal of Speech, 84, 491–530. Retrieved June 17, 2002, from proquest.umi.com John, D., & Mlay, M. (1999). Community-based environmental protection: Encouraging civic environmentalism. In K. Sexton, A. A. Marcus, K. W. Easter, & T. D. Burkhardt (Eds.), Better environmental decisions: Strategies for governments, businesses and communities (pp. 353–376). Washington, DC: Island. Juanillo, N. K., & Scherer, C. W. (1995). Attaining a state of informed judgments: Toward a dialectical discourse on risk. In B. Burleson (Ed.), Communication yearbook, 18 (pp. 278–299). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. Katz, S. B., & Miller, C. R. (1996). The low-level radioactive waste citing controversy in North Carolina: Toward a rhetorical model of risk communication. In C. G. Herndl & S. C. Brown (Eds.), Green culture: Environmental rhetoric in contemporary America (pp. 111–140). Madison: The University of Wisconsin Press. Killingsworth, J., & Palmer, J. S. (1992). Ecospeak. Carbondale: Southern Illinois University Press. Kreuzwieser, M. (1995, May/June). Washing away? Savannah Magazine, 6, 29–35. Krimsky, S., & Golding, D. (Eds.). (1992). Preface. In Social theories of risk (pp. XIII–XVII). Westport, CT: Praeger. Krueger, G. (1998, June 14). River deep, rift wide. Savannah Morning News Electronic Edition. Retrieved February 15, 2001, from www.savannahnow.com Krueger, G. (1999a, February 12). Fish and Wildlife withdraws from ports’ stakeholder group. Savannah Morning News Electronic Edition. Retrieved February 15, 2001, from www.savannahnow.com Krueger, G. (1999b, March 3). Ports get new leader. Savannah Morning News Electronic Edition. Retrieved February 15, 2001, from www.savannahnow.com Krueger, G. (1999c, June 9). Ports group stuck in its own mud. Savannah Morning News Electronic Edition. Retrieved February 15, 2001, from www.savannahnow.com Krueger, G. (1999d, December 8). Little creatures, potential problem. Savannah Morning News Electronic Edition. Retrieved November 11, 2000, from www. savannahnow.com Krueger, G. (2000a, January 12). Environmental group asks if harbor deepening will cause flooding. The Savannah Morning News Electronic Edition. Retrieved February 15, 2001, from www.savannahnow.com

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Krueger, G. (2000b, March 15). Environmental groups sue Corps of Engineers over Savannah, GA, harbor. The Savannah Morning News Electronic Edition. Retrieved February 15, 2001, from www.savannahnow.com Krueger, G. (2001, September 28). Groups support unified statewide water policy. Savannah Morning News Electronic Edition. Retrieved February 15, 2001, from www.savannahnow.com. Lange, J. I. (1998). The logic of competing information campaigns: Conflict over old growth and the spotted owl. In C. Waddell (Ed.), Landmark essays on rhetoric and the environment (pp. 125–144). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. Mansbridge, J. J. (1983). Beyond adversarial democracy. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. McCombs, M., & Reynolds, A. (1999). The poll with a human face. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. McGee, M. C. (1980/1995). The ‘ideograph’: A link between rhetoric and ideology. In C. R. Burchardt (Ed.), Readings in rhetorical criticism (pp. 442–456). State College, PA: Strata. McLeod, J., Scheufele, D. A., Moy, P., Horowitz, E. M., Holbert, R. L., Zhang, W., Zubric, S. & Zubric, J. (1999). Understanding deliberation: The effects of discussion etworks on participation in a public forum. Communication Research, 26, 743–774. Mendelberg, T., & Oleske, J. (2000). Race and public deliberation. Political Communication, 17, 169–191. Retrieved June 17, 2002, from chiron.gsu.edu Murdock, B. S., & Sexton, K. (1999). Community based partnerships. In K. Sexton, A. A. Marcus, K. W. Easter, & T. D. Burkhardt (Eds.), Better environmental decisions: Strategies for governments, businesses and communities (pp. 377– 400). Washington, DC: Island. Pace, D. (1999, April 29). Bill authorizing deepening of Georgia ports clears house. Associated Press. Retrieved June 17, 2002, from web.lexus-nexus.com Page, B. I. (1996). Who deliberates: Mass media in modern democracy. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Politics and water. (1998, June 14). Savannah Morning News Electronic Edition. Retrieved November 11, 2000, from www.savannahnow.com Ports Authority gets favorable report from the Corps of Engineers. (1999, October 23). Associated Press. Retrieved June 17, 2002, from web.lexus-nexus.com Project should proceed. (1998, July 21). The Savannah Morning News Electronic Edition. Retrieved November 11, 2000, from www.savannahnow.com Renn, O. (1992). Concepts of risk: A classification. In S. Krimsky & D. Golding (Eds.), Social theories of risk (pp. 53–82). Westport, CT: Praeger. Richardson, H. S. (1997). Democratic institutions. In J. Bohman & W. Rehg (Eds.), Deliberative democracy (pp. 349– 382). Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. Russell, P., & Hines, B. (1992). Savannah: A history of her people since 1733. Savannah, GA: Fredrick C. Beil. Savannah River: Group sues to stop harbor dredging. (2000). Greenwire. Retrieved June 17, 2002, from web.lexus-nexus.com Schmitt, B., & Guidera, A. (1998, October 20). Ports deepening to be put on hold. The Savannah Morning News Electronic Edition. Retrieved November 11, 2000, from www.savannahnow.com Schwarze, S. (2001). Public participation and failed legitimization: The case of Forest Service rhetorics in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area. In M. F. Aepli, J. W. Delicath, & S. P. Depoe (Eds.), Proceedings of the 6th biennial conference on communication and the environment (pp. 191–201). Cincinnati, OH: Center for Environmental Communication Studies. Seabrook, C. (1998, November 22). A not so safe harbor; a proposal to deepen Savannah’s port could imperil the wetlands of the wildlife refuge. The Atlanta Journal Constitution, p. 1B.

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Seabrook, C. (2000, March 15). Suit filed to halt work on Savannah Harbor. The Atlanta Journal Constitution, p. 3B. Sechler, B. (1998, August 8). Harbor deepening gets county support. The Savannah Morning News Electronic Edition. Retrieved November 11, 2000, from www. savannahnow.com Senecah, S. (2001). The process trinity of voice, standing and influence: The role of practical theory in planning and evaluating the effectiveness of environmental participatory processes. In M. F. Aepli, J. W. Delicath, & S. P. Depoe (Eds.), Proceedings of the 6th biennial conference on communication and the environment (pp. 224–234). Cincinnati, OH: Center for Environmental Communication Studies Shade, H., & DeGennaro, R. (2000, March 13). Savannah project part of a disturbing trend. The Post and Courier, p. A11. Southern Environmental Law Center [SELC]. (1998, July 7). Savannah Comment Letter. Retrieved November 17, 2000, from www.selc.org Southern Environmental Law Center [SELC]. (2000). Savannah River, SC and GA. Retrieved November 17, 2000, from www.selc.org Spragens, T. (1998). Book review of public deliberation: Pluralism, complexity and democracy by James Bohman. Constellations: An international journal of critical & democratic theory, 5, 9. Retrieved June 17, 2002, from chiron.gsu.edu Spyke, N. P. (1999). Public participation in environmental decisionmaking at the new millennium: Structuring new spheres of public influence. Boston College Environmental Affairs Law Review, 26, 263–313. Stakeholder Evaluation Group [SEG]. (1999a, February 6). Meeting tapes. Savannah, GA: Georgia Ports Authority. Stakeholder Evaluation Group [SEG]. (1999b, July 13). Meeting summary and meeting tapes. Retrieved November 5, 2000, from www.sysconn.com/harbor/SEG/Meeting Stakeholder Evaluation Group [SEG]. (1999c, December 7). Savannah Harbor Improvement Project Stakeholders Evaluation Group meeting. Retrieved November 5, 2000, from www.sysconn.com/harbor/SEG/Meeting Stearney, L. M. (1996). Sex control technology and reproductive choice: The conflation of technical and political argument in the new science of human reproduction. Communication Theory, 4, 388–405. Taxpayers for Common Sense [TCS]. (1999). Savannah Harbor expansion: Traffic forecasts wildly optimistic. Retrieved November 11, 2000, from www.taxpayer.net Taxpayers for Common Sense [TCS]. (2000, February 24). Corps’ secret growth plan. Retrieved February 15, 2001, from www.taxpayer.net Urbinati, N. (2000). Representation as advocacy: A study of democratic deliberation. Political Theory, 28, 758–786. Retrieved June 17, 2002, from proquest.umi.com Vaughan, E., & Seifert, M. (1992). Variability in the framing of risk issues. Journal of Social Issues, 48, 119–135. Waddell, C. (1996). Saving the Great Lakes: Public participation in environmental policy. In C. G Herndl & S. C. Brown (Eds.), Green culture: Environmental rhetoric in contemporary America (pp. 141–163). Madison: University of Wisconsin Press. Weeks, E. C. (2000). The practice of deliberative democracy: Results from four large scale trials. Public Administration Review, 60, 360–372. Williams, D. (1999, March 3). Environmentalists enthused over 1999 General Assembly. Savannah Morning News Electronic Edition. Retrieved February 15, 2001, from www. savannahnow.com Wooton, S. (1996, June 2). Savannah’s comeback; Port: Going out and finding a greater diversity of cargo and steamship lines has helped the port of Savannah battle its way from the brink of ruin to prosperity. The Baltimore Sun, p. 1E.

CHAPTER THREE

One Hundred Years of Nuclear Discourse: Four Master Themes and Their Implications for Environmental Communication

William J. Kinsella North Carolina State University

This chapter examines the phenomenon of “nuclear discourse,” understood as a formation of power/knowledge linking institutions, practices, and a dense network of representations and meanings. This discursive formation has deep historical roots, including ancient concepts of atomism, Platonic idealism, medieval notions of alchemy and transmutation, discourses of the sublime, and the modernist narrative of human mastery over nature. From these roots, the specific body of discourse examined here emerged more recently and quite rapidly. Its beginning could reasonably be placed in the year 1903, when Ernest Rutherford and Frederick Soddy published an influential paper providing “the first informed calculations of the amount of energy released by radioactive decay” (Rhodes, 1986, p. 43).1 Einstein’s landmark paper on special relativity, providing the theoretical link between mass and energy, appeared 2 years later. If those scientific papers—the first formal declarations of the immense potential of nuclear energy—are adopted as markers, then contemporary nuclear discourse is now a century old. Over the course of that century, nuclear discourse has generated an elaborate body of theoretical and practical knowledge, immensely powerful technologies, a vast system of organizations and institutions, and unprecedented material, social, and political 1 The 1903 paper by Rutherford and Soddy, entitled “Radioactive Change,” was reprinted in Rutherford (1962) and elaborated further by Soddy (1909). Rhodes (1986) and Ruthven (1993) described how the findings of Rutherford and Soddy provided the basis for a novel by H. G. Wells (1914), and how Wells’ novel, in turn, influenced the nuclear physicist Leo Szilard. Szilard was a key contributor to both the scientific and the political discourse that would lead to the Manhattan project and the development of nuclear weapons; thus, this chain of associations illustrates the complex genealogy of nuclear discourse.

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consequences of global scope. Current concerns regarding nuclear weapons proliferation, potential nuclear terrorism, and strategic nuclear policy (e.g., Barletta, 2002; Cordesman, 2002; Kushner, 2003; Mathur, 2001) demonstrate the continuing significance and evolving characteristics of this discursive formation. Nuclear discourse warrants close attention by communication scholars both as a practical social problem and as a phenomenon of theoretical interest, and it is increasingly receiving such attention (cf. Taylor, 1998; Taylor, Kinsella, Depoe, & Metzler, 2005). A more specific focus of this chapter is the complex relationship between nuclear discourse and environmental communication. I argue that nuclear discourse provides a relatively recalcitrant system of meanings that enable, constrain, and structure environmental communication in significant ways. Nevertheless, the recalcitrance of nuclear discourse is certainly not absolute, and environmental communication provides important opportunities and resources for its transformation. The need for such transformation is evident in some of the most disturbing products of nuclear discourse: dangerous and increasingly uncontrollable weapons of extraordinary power, massive accumulations of deadly materials with lifetimes measured in millennia, and profound effects on society, politics, culture, and the environment. The following analysis employs a rhetorical framework adapted from the work of Kenneth Burke (1945, 1966, 1969) to examine four key themes that inform and structure nuclear discourse. The analysis also draws broadly on the concepts of the discursive formation, power/knowledge, and disciplinary power as developed by Michel Foucault (1972, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1981, 1982) and as applied to the physical sciences by Joseph Rouse (1987, 1993). This synthesis of Burkean and Foucauldian perspectives facilitates engagement with both the “thematic” and the “analytic” dimensions of nuclear discourse, recognizing that this discourse is both a source and a product of social, political, and cultural power (Ruthven, 1993; Taylor, 1998). Although the analysis is general in scope, it is also informed by two longitudinal, ethnographic studies of nuclear discourse and nuclear institutions. In an ongoing study of the U.S. nuclear fusion research community, I have examined the cultural, political, institutional, organizational, and scientific discourses that constitute an ambitious international research effort (Kinsella, 1996, 1999, 2004a, 2004c). In an ongoing study of the massive environmental cleanup program within the former U.S. nuclear weapons production complex, I have examined how technical, bureaucratic, regulatory, activist, and public interest discourses interact in a complex policy domain (Kinsella, 2001, 2002, 2004c). Crucial to both projects is the principle that nuclear materialities and nuclear discourse are deeply interrelated, in ways that I elaborate more generally. The present chapter does not emphasize explicit connections to these empirical projects, nor to important nuclear issues and events that are currently unfolding, such as strategic nuclear policy, proliferation of nuclear weapons and their component materials, concerns about nuclear and

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radiological terrorism, nuclear energy policy, or the environmental consequences of nuclear activities. Nevertheless, its purposes are, precisely, to provide a critical theoretical framework for examining such topics and to demonstrate their interconnectedness within a broader discursive formation that is coherent, powerful, and evolving. THEMATICS AND ANALYTICS: A FRAMEWORK FOR EXAMINING THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN NUCLEAR DISCOURSE AND ENVIRONMENTAL COMMUNICATION Nuclear discourse and environmental communication are large and complex phenomena, and a comprehensive analysis of their relationship is beyond the scope of any single chapter or essay. Instead, here I add another perspective to those provided by recent projects that link these two domains (Barnes-Kloth, Depoe, Hamilton, & Lombardo, 2001; Depoe, 2004; Hamilton, 2004; Hendry, 2001; Johnson, 2001; Roush & Burger, 2001; Taylor & Davis, 2001; Taylor, Kinsella, Depoe, & Metzler, 2005). Inspired by Burke’s essay on “four master tropes” (Burke, 1945), I organize my analysis around four “master themes” that are prominent in nuclear discourse. I refer to these as themes rather than tropes, because they are not basic figurative devices in the same sense as Burke’s metaphor, metonymy, synecdoche, and irony. Nevertheless, the four themes represent a set of fundamental and recurrent meanings associated with nuclear phenomena, and they work together synergistically to produce great rhetorical force. Like Burke’s tropes, the themes “shade into one another”; as he put it, “Give a man but one of them, tell him to exploit its possibilities, and if he is thorough in doing so, he will come upon the other three” (Burke, 1945, p. 503). Burke himself addressed two of these themes, mystery and entelechy, outside the specific domain of nuclear discourse. The other themes, potency and secrecy, are readily visible in nuclear discourse and complement the first two in ways that I elaborate later in this discussion. Together, these four themes provide useful tools for explicating the nuclear discursive formation and its relationship to environmental communication. However, in using them for these purposes, I agree with Ruthven (1993), who stressed the need for “more than a thematics of nuclearism” (p. 17). Ruthven argued that although many critics have discussed the influences of nuclear discourse on society, politics, and culture (e.g., Chaloupka, 1992; Gerry, 1987; Norris, 1992, 1994), they have been less successful in examining how nuclear discourse is, simultaneously, a product of those same systems. This observation provides an important reminder that nuclear discourse is not necessarily the root cause of the many problems associated with it; instead, it might be understood more usefully as a product of underlying systems of meaning, and a vehicle for flows of power/knowledge associated with those meaning systems. Thus, in the discussion that follows, I wish to emphasize that nuclear discourse and environmental communication have a relationship of mutual influence. For example, nuclear discourse influences

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environmental communication when commitments to weapons production produce environmental consequences that become topics for public deliberation (Dalton, Garb, Lovrich, Pierce, & Whiteley, 1999; Dycus, 1996; Makhijani, Hu, & Yih, 1995), or when the claimed successes of nuclear science and technology appear to legitimate the modernist project of the mastery of nature (Kinsella, 2004a). However, influences flow in the opposite direction as well, when discourses portraying the American desert as an unproductive wasteland foster its colonization by nuclear enterprises (Kuletz, 1998; Limerick, 1998) or, more broadly, whenever “our perceived relationship with nature influences nuclear decision making” (Taylor & Davis, 2001, p. 288). Additionally, Ruthven pointed out that “to thematize the nuclear is also to familiarize it; and the more it is familiarized, the greater the risk of its becoming normalized” (p. 42). Responding to that cautionary observation, in explicating how nuclear discourse operates I seek to problematize it rather than to reify it. As Taylor (1998) suggested, thematic analyses tend to emphasize the “structural properties” of nuclear discourse and encourage a “synchronic focus” that neglects its complex, conflicted, multivocal, and evolving qualities (p. 306). Thus, I augment my quasi-Burkean thematic analysis with a Foucauldian concern for how the themes manifest, produce, and direct a complex and evolving flow of nuclear power/knowledge. Consistent with Foucault’s analysis of discursive control and regulation (Foucault, 1981), these themes discipline nuclear discourse by affecting who can speak with authority about nuclear topics, what can and cannot be said about them, and in what settings this discourse can take place. At the same time, the themes provide resources and sites of engagement for those who would contest the hegemonic meanings operating in nuclear discourse. As Foucault (1978, p. 101) observed, “Discourse transmits and produces power; it reinforces it, but also undermines and exposes it, renders it fragile and makes it possible to thwart it.” As organizing principles for nuclear discourse, and as vehicles for the flow of power/knowledge between nuclear discourse and environmental communication, the themes are both constraining and enabling. With this analytical perspective established, I turn to the four nuclear themes. Although I present the themes individually and sequentially, I must emphasize that in practice they are deeply interconnected. I indicate some of the complex connections among the themes throughout the following discussion, and further connections are clearly implied. The themes do not only “shade into each other” like Burke’s four master tropes; rather, they continuously evoke and complement each other within a dense network of meanings and mutual implications. MYSTERY The nuclear domain is both intrinsically mysterious and discursively mystified. If mystery is associated with “otherness,” then the fundamental physical differences between human and nuclear phenomena—differences in spatial and temporal

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scale, and in scales of mass and energy—do impose a condition of mystery. That mystery, however, is inflated and compounded through mystification, a discursive accomplishment. Nuclear science, technologies, and policies, products of human discourse, are widely portrayed as arcane, difficult, and out of the intellectual reach of ordinary people. Paradoxically, in a world where nuclear power plants and nuclear weapons are pervasive presences, the legend persists that only a gifted few can understand these products of science and technology. The term nuclear science is a symbol of intellectual difficulty with wide cultural currency, and a doubly powerful symbol in a culture in which the term science alone evokes considerable awe (Toumey, 1996). By their associations with the presumed “hardest” of the “hard sciences,” nuclear weapons, nuclear military strategy, and commercial nuclear energy are similarly mystified.2 This distancing of nuclear topics from the realm of public discourse constrains public participation in policy decisions, sustaining a culture of expertise and technocratic decision making. In this exclusionary mode, nuclear discourse is a site of ongoing rhetorical “boundary work” (Gieryn, 1983, 1995) with important political effects: As cognitive boundaries are constructed between expert and public knowledge, political power is bounded as well (Kinsella, 2001, 2002, 2004b). These effects extend to environmental communication more broadly when boundaries between experts and the public, modeled most persuasively in nuclear discourse, are replicated in other environmental policy settings. Mystification in the nuclear realm, the archetypical technical domain, provides a template for mystification in other domains in which the “technical” and “public” spheres (Goodnight, 1982) are viewed as distinct discursive arenas. Walter Fisher (1987) illustrated this point by examining the reception of a classic ecological manifesto, Jonathan Schell’s The Fate of the Earth (1982). Arguing that nuclear weapons posed an unprecedented threat to the planetary ecosystem, Schell called for their abolition, but his suggestion was dismissed by technical experts as being unrealistic and impractical. In Fisher’s analysis, “Public moral argument was thus overwhelmed by privileged argument …. Technical argument … denuded [the issue] of morality altogether, making the dispute one for ‘experts’ alone to consider” (Fisher, 1987, p. 71). Thus, expert rationality colonized debate about one of the most public issues imaginable, the fate of the global commons. If this issue can be rationalized in such a narrow sense, then, by implication, so can a multitude of other public policy issues, including many in the environmental arena. Another effect of mystification is evident in this episode as well. Apart from the question of the mode of rationality, the values exhibited here are telling: Strategic military superiority was deemed more important than the protection of the 2 Feminist critics find metaphors such as “the hard sciences” indicative of a deep masculine bias in the discourses of science and technology. There is substantial demographic and discursive evidence for such a bias within the overwhelmingly male communities of nuclear science and technology (cf. Caputi, 1993; Cohn, 1987; Harding, 1991; Traweek, 1988).

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global environment. Burke’s observations on the theological and hierarchical implications of mystery, to which I now turn, illuminate the roots of this value preference. Mystery, Theology, and Hierarchy “The atom” is mysterious, and mystified, in its associations with the primordial, the fundamental, and the sacred. Atoms are invisible abstractions, idealized and perfect in their mathematical representations; they are Platonic ideals or Husserlian essences. But at the same time, atoms are capable of direct and dramatic material effects as symbolized by the penultimate and sublime nuclear image—the mushroom cloud (Boyer, 1985; Caputi, 1993; Ferguson, 1984; Hales, 1991; Rosenthal, 1991; Ruthven, 1993; Weart, 1989; Winkler, 1993). In this merging of spirit and matter, abstractness and consequentiality, atoms are godlike entities. In striving to control and deploy atomic forces, humans, in turn, appropriate the status of gods. Caputi (1993), Chernus (1986), and Rhodes (1986) have noted the prevalence of religious imagery—and personal identification—in the discourse of scientists (Robert Oppenheimer), military officers (Thomas Farrell), politicians (Harry Truman), and journalists (William Laurence) who participated in the drama of the first nuclear blast. As Chernus (1986) commented, “[Atomic] weapons are special in that they rely … on the basic principle that underlies our entire conception of material reality in the twentieth century—the structure of the atom. The mystery embodied in the Bomb is the mystery of reality itself, and it is the nuclear scientists who have unlocked or harnessed it” (p. 15). In the preceding quote, Chernus called attention to the deification of “the Bomb” with an ironic use of capitalization. David Lilienthal (1963), the first chairperson of the Atomic Energy Commission and an early nuclear rhetor, apparently had no such ironic intention when he capitalized “the Atom” throughout a series of essays on its political and social meaning. Meanwhile, prominent nuclear scientists were contributing to the elevation of their own discipline with essays such as Erwin Schrödinger’s What Is Life? (1945) and Niels Bohr’s Atomic Physics and Human Knowledge (1958), laying claim to the most fundamental questions of ontology and epistemology. Thus, the physical forces of the atom have acquired a theological status, and the “nuclear priesthood” that (ad)ministers these forces has become mysterious as well.3 Mystery extends, further, to the weapons that embody and deliver these forces, and to the strategic “doctrines” that govern their place in a system of global relations based on the constant nuclear presence. In the doctrine of “deterrence,” that presence itself replaces war (Baudrillard, 1983), whereas in 3 The term nuclear priesthood can be traced back at least as far as Lifton and Falk (1982), but the concept of a scientific priesthood was suggested in 1875 by Francis Galton, a cousin of Charles Darwin (Kitcher, 2001). Although Galton’s concept was elitist in tone, Lifton and Falk used the idea in the critical sense that I intend here.

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the alternative doctrine of “nuclear war fighting,” the simulacra of deterrence edge closer to a literal apocalypse in which the mysterious nuclear forces would be revealed and manifested materially. As Burke (1969) observed, mystery begets hierarchy: “The very word ‘hierarchy,’ with its original meaning of ‘priest-rule’ (while in English one also hears ‘higher’) has connotations of celestial mystery” (p. 306). As we have seen, hierarchical structures that emerge under the nuclear sign privilege closed communities of technical, military, and government insiders. Meanwhile, geopolitical hierarchies are driven by a competition for nuclear superiority, or at least by a striving for membership in the “nuclear club” (symbolized by the possession of a nuclear “club” of another kind). These modes of hierarchy are mutually reinforcing: Geopolitical nuclear threats legitimate domestic nuclear institutions, which in turn provoke the expansion and intensification of those same threats (Kurtz, 1988; Nadel, 1995). In this context, environmental protection is subordinated to the overriding motive of weapons production, with both material and discursive consequences. Within the weapons production system, extraordinary material hazards are produced, while discourse about those hazards is constrained and contained (Kinsella, 2001). More broadly, environmental concerns in general are viewed as being less urgent than national security priorities, narrowly defined. Although one response to mystery is deification, another response is the urge to control or domesticate that mystery. These two responses exist in tension within the nuclear discursive formation. Thus another, related form of hierarchy—the most far-reaching and the one that most fundamentally links nuclear discourse to environmental communication—emerges as an increasingly alienated and manipulative relationship between humanity and nature, understood as binary opposites. The “scientists who have ‘unlocked’ or ‘harnessed’” (Chernus, 1986, p. 15) nuclear forces have taken the modernist project of subjugating the natural world to its ultimate end. Even the nuclear domain, one of the most inaccessible and mysterious aspects of nature, has become a “standing reserve” (Heidegger, 1977) for human use; by implication, there are no limits to nature’s potential for human colonization and exploitation. Rogers (1998) examined the implications of this binary, hierarchical opposition between humanity and nature, tracing its Platonic origins and showing how it grounds both representational and constitutive theories of communication. Drawing from feminist theory and from Neitzsche’s reflections on truth and power, he pointed out the association of “nature” or “matter” with the feminine and how a masculinized “will to truth” orders and controls that feminine principle. In such a discursive formation, possibilities for human dialogue with nature are forfeited in exchange for a regime of separation and domination. Thus, the “domination” (Leiss, 1972), “death” (Merchant, 1979), or “end” (McKibben, 1989) of nature are driven in an especially potent way by nuclear discourse. I turn now to an examination of that discursive potency and its relationship to potent nuclear materialities.

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POTENCY Ten months after the destruction of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Einstein (1946) wrote that “[t]he unleashed power of the atom has changed everything save our modes of thinking, and we thus drift toward unparalleled catastrophe.” It is clear that the catastrophe envisioned by Einstein would entail the end of human civilization, if not the human species, for he concluded that “a new type of thinking is essential if mankind is to survive and move toward higher levels” (p. 11).4 Einstein’s statement called attention to the potency of nuclear energy and to the urgency of our situation, and has become a commonplace of the nuclear age. However, any new thinking adequate to this situation must recognize that “the unleashed power of the atom” is both a material and a discursive phenomenon. The statements of many nuclear rhetors presume that nuclear potency is entirely a property of the external, material world. For example, Mechling and Mechling (1995) showed how the image of the “nuclear genie” gained ascendancy in popular portrayals of atomic energy during the 1950s. In those narratives, humanity has encountered a pre-existing force, like a fisherman who, while walking on a beach, spies a bottle containing a mysterious and powerful genie. Human responsibility for the genie’s power begins only at this moment of encounter, and humans can choose to use that power for good or for evil. The nuclear narratives of the 1950s express confidence that humans can domesticate this external power, appropriating it for positive ends. Indeed, 3 decades later, in the face of a nuclear arms race that challenged this confidence in human control, one could still find physicist Edward Teller appealing to the “genie of technology” (Teller, 1987, p. 22) in his advocacy for a missile defense program. For Teller, the dangers of nuclear energy came from without—from nature or from hostile foreign powers—and could be contained and controlled through the use of ever-more sophisticated technologies. Continuing U.S. commitments to an expensive and potentially destabilizing missile defense system maintained this same view toward containing the nuclear genie, and toward technology as the control of potent external forces. Thus, little evidence of new thinking has emerged during the half-century since Einstein’s observation. In later elaborations of what he meant by “a new type of thinking,” even Einstein, himself, returned to themes he had advocated decades before the advent of nuclear weapons, such as a rejection of nationalism and militarism and a call for world government (Clark, 1971). Goals such as these, however 4 Six months earlier, Einstein (1945/1954) had stated that in a nuclear war “[p]erhaps two thirds of the people of the Earth might be killed. But enough men capable of thinking, and enough books, would be left to start again, and civilization could be restored” (p. 118). His appraisal of the nuclear hazard appears to have grown (even) more severe by the time of his 1946 statement. Responding to the immanent development of the hydrogen bomb in 1950 he envisioned a still greater risk, suggesting that “radioactive poisoning of the atmosphere, and hence annihilation of any life on Earth, has been brought within the range of technical possibilities” (“Dr. Albert Einstein,” 1955, p. 1).

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important or necessary, have remained elusive while the potency and availability of nuclear weapons have increased enormously. Although the catastrophe envisioned by Einstein now appears even more threatening, our responses have been constrained by the same deep structure of meanings that produced the nuclear situation. This structure of meanings limits our understandings of nuclear potency and our responses to that potency. As the preceding discussion of the theme of mystery showed, contemporary nuclear discourse has very deep roots. “The unleashed power of the atom” is not an external phenomenon we have recently discovered, which our discourse must now address; instead, it is a product of centuries of discourse about nature and about the relationship between humans and nature. As Mickunas and Pilotta (1998) observed, a tension between atomistic and wholistic views, present in Western philosophical thought since Aristotle, was resolved in favor of atomism by the Enlightenment philosophers. A number of consequences followed: Nature was viewed as being infinitely manipulable by human agents, quantitative analysis took priority over qualitative approaches, and a fundamentally technological and instrumental rationality was established. Human intervention in nuclear processes is a capstone of the subsequent modernist project and its conceptions of science, technology, progress, and control—a dramatic demonstration of the Baconian vision of knowledge as power. The modernist constellation of meanings and practices, articulated over the course of 3 centuries, has culminated in contemporary nuclear discourse and its potent material products such as nuclear weapons, nuclear power plants, and nuclear wastes. As I have demonstrated in the case of nuclear fusion research (Kinsella, 1996, 1999, 2004a), nuclear power is not simply the liberated energy of subatomic particles; it is also a formation of power/knowledge constituted through technical, organizational, institutional, political, and cultural discourses. Nuclear materialities and nuclear discourse are inextricably linked, and their potency is a product of how they operate together. As Beck (1992) suggested, we live in a condition of “reflexive modernity,” subject to hazards of our own creation; only by reflecting on the discourses and practices that led to these hazards, and reconstructing them deliberately, can we interrupt that reflexive loop (Kinsella, 2002). Examining the roots of nuclear discourse is an essential part of that reflective process. From Material Catastrophe to Discursive Catastrophe Although the material catastrophe envisioned by Einstein has not (yet) occurred, arguably it has been replaced by a social and political catastrophe, a catastrophe of public discourse. In an influential essay that helped inaugurate the “nuclear criticism” project of the mid-1980s (cf. Norris, 1994), Derrida (1984) suggested that the prospect of nuclear annihilation “through all the techno-scientific inventiveness that it motivates, structures not only the army, diplomacy, politics, but the whole of the human socius” (p. 23). In a Burkean reading of Derrida, consistent

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with the preceding discussion of nuclear mystery, Williams (1989) suggested that the nuclear threat has acquired the status of a transcendental signified, a value or meaning that stands outside language. As an overarching presence beyond the limits of linguistic representation, that threat appears mysterious and self-generating. Such an ontological or theological absolute can neither be changed nor ignored; it appears as if our only available response is to submit to its potent disciplinary effects. Examining a wide range of popular cultural texts from the Cold War era, Nadel (1995) demonstrated how these disciplinary effects extended well beyond the (explicitly) nuclear domain. Although the U.S. geopolitical strategy of “containment” through nuclear threat was directed at the Soviet Union, it motivated a parallel domestic containment of individual identities, social roles, cultural expression, and political discourse. Under the nuclear sign, operationalized as a binary opposition between the superpowers, the general population internalized behavioral and discursive boundaries modeled in countless mass media messages and in everyday social interaction. Thus, writing almost 4 decades after Einstein at an advanced stage of the Cold War, Baudrillard (1983) displayed an optimism regarding our basic survival but a pessimism regarding the conditions of that survival. Although his comment was directed at the Cold War deterrence regime, it now seems eerily relevant to emerging concerns about social control in an era marked by new fears of nuclear proliferation and terrorism: It isn’t that the direct menace of atomic destruction paralyzes our lives....Deterrence excludes war—the antiquated violence of exploding systems. Deterrence is the neutral, implosive violence of metastable or involving systems. The risk of nuclear atomization only serves as a pretext ... to the installation of a universal system of security, linkup, and control whose deterrent effect does not aim for atomic clash at all ... but really the much larger probability of any real event, of anything which could disturb the general system and upset the balance. The balance of terror is the terror of balance. (pp. 59–60)

Ironically appropriating a term from nuclear weapons design, Baudrillard (1994) described an “implosion” of culture and politics around a narrow range of possibilities. The threat of material annihilation is transformed into a potent discursive annihilation encompassing public speech, cultural expression, and political process, as society’s efforts are focused on sustaining the precarious nuclear order. Environmental communication is among the many domains impoverished by this arrangement. Most directly, the legitimacy of social commitments to nuclear activities with dangerous environmental consequences appears unquestionable, and public discussion of these activities is discouraged. Less directly but nevertheless pervasively, environmental concerns of all types are devalued and deferred, and public discourse provides few opportunities for considering more

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harmonious ways of living on and with the Earth. Although alternative voices are certainly not absent in this discursive regime, their potency is strongly attenuated. These poststructuralist readings of nuclear discourse are disturbing: they suggest that not only environmental communication, but virtually all public discourse, is dampened by the effects of nuclearism. However, they also point to a potential way out of the closures that have prevailed to date. These closures are products of the meanings we have attached to nuclear phenomena, and by examining those meanings more closely we can recognize their constructedness and contingency. An analysis of the nuclear discursive formation is a first step toward its reconstruction, opening up new possibilities for how we view nuclear materialities and our relationship to those materialities. Indeed, environmental communication can play a special role in that process of reconstruction. If fundamental attitudes toward nature—the assumed binary opposition between nature and humanity, the privileging of the human pole in this opposition, the prevalence of atomistic rather than wholistic thinking, and the resulting modernist project of control—are among the sources of nuclearism, then environmental communication provides a wide range of opportunities for interrogating those attitudes. When McKibben (1989) examined the social practices that lead to global climate change, or Merchant (1979) critiqued the masculinist bias in discourses of nature, they also implicitly questioned the discursive premises of nuclearism. More directly, environmental communication provides some of the most accessible sites for public engagement with nuclear institutions, policies, and practices; typically, individuals and communities can voice environmental concerns with greater authority and perceived legitimacy than they would bring to more arcane debates on strategic military policy or nuclear energy policy. Thus, environmental communication provides both direct and indirect opportunities to challenge the nuclear discursive order. The Continuing Potency of Nuclear Discourse Although the observations of Baudrillard, Derrida, Nadel, and Williams were situated in the historical context of the Cold War, they remain relevant to the contemporary situation. The discursive constraints, communicative patterns, and systems of meaning established over nearly half a century are still influential; as Taylor and Hartnett (2000) remarked, their residues “contaminate” the ambiguous new discursive environment. Thus, Taylor and Davis (2001, p. 286) observed that “the ways in which [Cold War] events are interpreted and enforced as ‘lessons’ may profoundly effect the institutions, policies, and technologies” that are now emerging. Public discourse surrounding many urgent contemporary issues—nuclear weapons proliferation, international nuclear rivalries, missile defense technologies, and terrorism threats—remains structured, in part, by the material and discursive “legacies” of the Cold War (Taylor, Kinsella, Depoe, & Metzler, 2005).

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It now appears that two distinct eras have followed the collapse of the binary opposition between the superpowers. For a decade, public perceptions of the threat of nuclear war diminished, leading to a broader recognition of the other nuclear threats it had masked: massive contamination at weapons production sites, vast accumulations of dangerous wastes from the production process, and the poisonous social and political effects of the Cold War discursive order. That decade brought increased challenges to the legitimacy of nuclear institutions, with many of those challenges emerging from environmental concerns (Dalton et al., 1999; Depoe, 2004; Dycus, 1996; Hamilton, 2004; Kinsella, 2001; Masco, 1999; Metzler, 1998; Ratliff, 1997; Taylor & Davis, 2001; Taylor et al., 2005). However, the post-Cold War decade has now been succeeded by an era marked by new perceptions of vulnerability to a multitude of threats, viewed or portrayed as external in origin. Although the sources and forms of these threats are more varied than were those of the Cold War, nuclear threats still retain a special symbolic potency.5 Directed outward, concerns about nuclear proliferation and nuclear terrorism are used to legitimate continued, and even expanded, commitments to defense production and military operations (Cordesman, 2002; Klare, 1995). Directed inward, they provide rhetorical resources for advocates of the “universal system of security, linkup, and control” that Baudrillard (1983, p. 60) identified. Thus, environmental concerns are again being displaced, and public discourse is again being constrained, as attention is focused on external threats and a new version of the Cold War “citadel culture” (Werkmeister, 1989) emerges. In this new context, another characteristic theme of nuclear discourse—secrecy—demands renewed critical attention. SECRECY Many commentators have identified secrecy as a fundamental principle of the nuclear discursive formation. According to Caputi (1993, p. 128), “As any analyst of nuclear culture knows, an unprecedented and profoundly enforced official secrecy is the most prominent feature of the history of nuclear development.” Probst and McGovern (1998, p. 14) described a “culture of secrecy” that still pervades the U.S. Department of Energy, long after the end of the Cold War. Within the communication discipline, Taylor (2002, p. 35) suggested that “Secrecy is perhaps the 5 A late Cold War-era analysis of “the symbolic nature of nuclear politics” by Jervis (1989, p. 174) is still relevant in this regard. However, it must be recognized that concerns about biological warfare and bioterrorism now exhibit many characteristics in common with nuclear discourse. Topics such as genetic engineering, genetic agriculture, cloning, and biological weapons prominently display the themes of biological mystery, potent interventions in life processes, proprietary knowledge as a commercial rationale for secrecy, and entelechy as manifested in genetic perfection or in the seemingly inevitable development of biological weapons. In this regard, it is noteworthy that the U.S. Department of Energy, the paradigmatic nuclear institution, is also a significant sponsor of genome research.

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defining characteristic of nuclear-organizational cultures.” Secrecy in nuclear discourse may appear necessary and even natural, but these and other authors have demonstrated that secrecy and secrets are discursive artifacts with deeply problematic implications. Arguing from a poststructuralist position, Taylor (2002) maintained that secrets are effects, rather than referents, of discourse; as such, they are both products and sources of institutional power. The pernicious political and psychological effects of nuclear secrecy are at the center of classic studies of the McCarthy era by Shils (1956) and of Cold War nuclearism by Lifton and Falk (1982). According to Lifton and Falk, “The myth of the ‘bomb secret’ is integral to the entire structure of illusion and deception around security” (p. 31). Citing external nuclear threats as a warrant for secrecy, an elite and self-regulating community authorizes itself to command public resources, constrain public discourse, and make crucial decisions autonomously in the name of the excluded public. Two ironies pervade this formation of nuclear power/knowledge. First, although secrecy limits public knowledge about nuclear matters, the resulting lack of knowledge provides a further justification for excluding the “uninformed” public from decision making. Thus, nuclear mysteries remain mystified, sustaining the hierarchical relationship between experts and the public. Second, although nuclear secrets may be shielded from the domestic public—at the cost of diminished democracy—they are nevertheless accessible to determined outsiders (Masco, 2002). Morland (1981) recognized both of these ironies when he set out in 1978 to discover and publicly disclose a specific technical innovation that allegedly had enabled the United States to develop thermonuclear weapons. By revealing “the one great remaining secret of long standing, the centerpiece of the structure” (p. 50), he sought to eliminate the primary justification for excluding the public from nuclear policymaking. Relying only on unclassified information culled from published materials and interviews with government scientists, Morland produced a magazine article that the U.S. Department of Energy found sufficiently threatening to warrant an (ultimately unsuccessful) court challenge. Although Morland’s strategy presumed that a specific material secret did, indeed, exist, his published description of that secret demonstrates the degree to which it was a discursive artifact. The secret proved to be an engineered solution to a particular technical problem, which presumably has now been addressed in a number of other ways by the United States and other nations (although government secrecy policies preclude a definitive statement in this regard). At the time of the article’s publication, a number of nations had already achieved thermonuclear status; thus, Morland’s point was that the effect of secrecy “had been to protect the defense establishment not from external enemies but from its own citizens” (p. 50). The centerpiece of nuclear power/knowledge, the artificial but potent “bomb secret,” has now spawned a host of secondary secrets regarding nuclear waste production, environmental contamination, health effects of nuclear processes and installations, locations and movements of nuclear materials, and plans for

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cleaning up (or not) after nuclear operations. Hence, I have argued elsewhere (Kinsella, 2001) that contemporary nuclear institutions face two ongoing, parallel problems of containment: the “material containment” of nuclear hazards, and the “discursive containment” of public knowledge about nuclear practices and their effects. Throughout the Cold War era, secrecy provided the primary mechanism for discursive containment by limiting public access to basic information about nuclear activities. Following the end of the Cold War, however, the legitimacy of secrecy was increasingly challenged as the threat of global conflict appeared to recede and the environmental, health, and economic consequences of nuclear weapons production became more visible. As secrecy failed, nuclear institutions accepted new standards of public disclosure as exemplified by the “Openness Initiative” undertaken by the U.S. Department of Energy (1995). Public debate began to shift from the issue of basic access to nuclear information, to the issue of what that information means, and to the related question of who can interpret the information authoritatively. With that shift, the discursive terrain became more complex and the possibilities for reconstructing nuclear discourse expanded. Although the principle of secrecy has now been challenged significantly, it continues to play an important role in structuring nuclear discourse. For example, alleged security breaches at the Los Alamos nuclear weapons laboratory in 1999 and 2000 received considerable media attention and led to a presidential order reorganizing the U.S. Department of Energy (Gerth & Weiner, 1999; Masco, 2002; Risen, 1999, 2000; Risen & Gerth, 1999; Taylor, 2002). Officially, this reorganization separates the department’s weapons development and production activities, now housed within a new National Nuclear Security Administration, from its other responsibilities, including environmental remediation, nuclear energy research and development, and non-nuclear energy activities. Official rhetoric, organizational structures, and budgetary categories naturalize this distinction between “defense” and “nondefense” operations, but a more systemic view reveals that nuclear military strategy, weapons design and development, weapons production, waste disposal, environmental remediation, and civilian energy applications are deeply interconnected (Makhijani et al., 1995). Thus, the department’s reorganization can be understood as an exercise in rhetorical boundary work, reifying an artificial distinction between “dangerous” military applications of nuclear energy and “benign” activities such as environmental management. This binary opposition preserves Lifton and Falk’s central “bomb secret” and its associated system of power/knowledge, while maintaining the claim of openness that the department has now established. In this context, Taylor et al. (2005) raised concerns that the institutional reforms of the immediate post-Cold War decade may be discursively contained, leaving the core of the nuclear system opaque to public scrutiny. In the present era of renewed nuclear fear, this prospect appears increasingly likely. The diffuse and multiple problems posed by proliferation of nuclear materials, and by the emergence of mysterious (or mystified) political

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actors viewed through orientalist lenses, are increasingly being constructed as potent threats warranting a potent new regime of secrecy. Secrecy and “Docile Citizenship” Arney (1991), Masco (2002), and Taylor (1990, 1992, 2002) all addressed another aspect of secrecy: its disciplinary effects on individuals who are incorporated into nuclear institutional systems. These authors focused their attention on “organizational subjects” (Taylor, 1990) such as Robert Oppenheimer, Klaus Fuchs, and Los Alamos scientist Wen Ho Lee, whose identities, both public and personal, are products of institutional, investigative, historical, and biographical discourses. As members of nuclear organizations, these subjects are targets of disciplinary power as conceptualized by Foucault (1978, 1979, 1980, 1982), produced through institutional processes of information collection, record keeping, and classification that simultaneously constrain and constitute their identities. One result is a depletion of personal efficacy; as Arney (1991) suggested, “Modern systems of expertise made the atomic scientist their agent and, in that violent process, made it difficult for anyone to speak any more about notions of responsibility, ethics, guilt, commitment, and the like” (p. 5). In this way, organizational subjects provide “biopower” or “docile bodies” (Foucault, 1978, 1979) sustaining the nuclear institutional order. Like nature itself, they become part of a “standing reserve” (Heidegger, 1977), stockpiled for use like the weapons they invent. Extending this principle more broadly, it appears that the disciplinary effects of nuclear discourse extend well beyond these individual organizational subjects. The poststructuralist observations of Baudrillard, Derrida, and Nadel, examined earlier, suggest that the nuclear system has colonized not only members of nuclear organizations, but the entire polis; producing a phenomenon that might be called “docile citizenship.” Through the system of meanings I have examined here, mystery, potency, and secrecy converge to disempower public participation and individual agency in the nuclear domain. More generally, that same meaning system valorizes technical expertise, military priorities, deference to authority, and narrow rather than broad participation in public policy decisions. As I have elaborated, these values and communicative norms, operating through the nuclear discursive formation, have important direct and indirect consequences for environmental communication. At the same time, environmental communication provides a discursive setting, a broad range of stakeholders, and a variety of topoi that enable challenges to the prevailing system of meanings. ENTELECHY The fourth nuclear theme, entelechy, resonates closely with the themes of mystery, potency, and secrecy. A key concept in Burke’s rhetorical theory (Lindsay, 1998), entelechy evokes associations including outcome, endpoint, consequence,

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fruition, perfection, culmination, implication, destiny, and fate. These concepts or equivalent ones appear frequently throughout nuclear discourse, technological discourse more generally, and environmental communication, linking with recurrent concerns regarding human agency, technological choice, moral responsibility, and technological, nuclear, and environmental futures. Nuclear entelechy is often understood deterministically or fatalistically, further constraining public participation and perceptions of agency, but such understandings are by no means necessary. A closer look at entelechy, as conceptualized by Burke and others, suggests that the principle can be used more constructively to recognize and respond to the implications of the nuclear situation. Burkean Entelechy in Nuclear Discourse Burke (1969) borrowed the entelechy principle from Aristotle, and used it to signify the essence of a phenomenon manifested in its “fruition” or “perfection”: The essence of a thing can be defined narratively in terms of its fulfillment or fruition. Thus, you state a man’s timeless essence in temporal terms if, instead of calling him “by nature a criminal,” you say, “he will end on the gallows.” Metaphysically, this formal principle gets its best-rounded expression in the Aristotelian entelechy, which classifies a thing by conceiving of its kind according to the perfection (that is, finishedness) of which that kind is capable …. By its fruition, we should judge it. (pp. 13–14, emphasis in original)

In this Burkean sense, nuclear weapons and nuclear waste are the fruition of nuclear discourse: They are material realizations of the theoretical discourse of nuclear physics that emerged at the beginning of the 20th century. If the fruition of nuclear discourse includes the violence wrought upon Hiroshima and Nagasaki, global threats of far greater violence, and environmental hazards that persist for millennia, then this discourse and the species that has produced it are, indeed, “rotten with perfection.” To fully account for these fruits of nuclear knowledge, however, we must view them as products of a total system including not only theoretical discourse but also social practices and institutions. The theoretical concept of nuclear energy has been elaborated discursively into particular practices and institutional forms within a specific historical context, linking it to military, political, and economic structures of power with wide-ranging material and social consequences. Brummett (1989) showed how nuclear discourse pursues perfection through vehicles such as the neutron bomb or “enhanced radiation weapon,” which destroys life efficiently while preserving property, or the abstract strategies of deterrence theory, which model the extinction of entire populations without reference to human suffering. These examples illustrate the principle that Burke (1969) called “symbolic perfection,” which carries the implications of language to their

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logical ends. Through its vocabulary, key symbols, and root metaphors, nuclear discourse generates “implicit rhetoric” (Lindsay, 1998) that identifies possibilities, instantiates values, and motivates action toward certain outcomes rather than others. If Hiroshima-scale fission weapons are understood as military assets, for example, then by implication thermonuclear weapons are better assets because of their greater potency, and large stockpiles of highly accurate thermonuclear weapons are better still. Thus, symbolic perfection motivates the drive toward instrumental-technical perfection in the realization of theoretical possibilities, in the optimization of selected technical effects, or in efforts to strategically control an adversary’s behavior. Similarly, the sanitized, abstract, acronym- laden language of “nukespeak” (Hilgartner, Bell, & O’Connor, 1982), or the gendered metaphors and domestic images that permeate the discourse of nuclear professionals (Cohn, 1987), have far-reaching symbolic implications that enable and constrain nuclear choices. Entelechy, Technology, and Theology: Questions of Determinism, Agency, and Responsibility According to a famous remark by Robert Oppenheimer (U.S. Atomic Energy Commission, 1954, p. 81), the implications of nuclear discourse were too “technically sweet” to resist; once the scientific discourse was produced, its fulfillment in nuclear technologies was set into motion. Similarly, in reconstructing his conversation with colleagues upon hearing of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, Werner Heisenberg (1971) reflected, “The worst thing about it all is precisely the realization that it was all so unavoidable.” These comments demonstrate how notions of inevitability, technological determinism, or “autonomous technology” (Winner, 1977) often inflect the entelechy principle, in technological discourse generally and in nuclear discourse more specifically (cf. Hubbard, 1999). Deterministic understandings of entelechy can also be rooted in theology, as in millennial religious rhetorics portraying nuclear holocaust as divine action or prophetic fulfillment, and in popular associations between nuclear war and the mysterious, apocalyptic images of the book of Revelation.6 To the extent that such notions of technological or theological determinism are accepted, human agency is discounted and a teleological “speeding onward toward a nuclear end” (Williams, 1989, p. 202) is legitimated. Alternative understandings of nuclear entelechy are possible, however. Winner (1977) provided an extended critique of the premises of technological determinism, eschewing the simplistic responses of “vague multifactoralism and glib reassertion of the voluntarist position” (p. 77). In Winner’s view, it is not enough to 6 Mystery, potency, and entelechy converge ominously in a paperback edition of the book of Revelation published at the time of the 2000–2001 millennial transition, which features an image of a nuclear mushroom cloud on its front cover (Revelation, 1999).

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note that technology is only one of many historical factors, or to hopefully insist that humans are in control of their own destiny. Instead, technology raises crucial questions of responsibility: In what ways can humans be considered responsible for technology, both as agents and as stewards, and what human responses to technology are possible? Winner was more successful at posing these questions than at answering them, but questions of responsibility provide a starting point for a more productive understanding of nuclear entelechy that transcends both technological and theological determinism. In contrast to the apocalyptic view, some leading theologians have affirmed the role of human agency in addressing the unique historical situation posed by the “nuclear age.” Kaufman (1985) proposed that the human encounter with nuclear energy represents a coming of age for the species, entailing unprecedented responsibilities. For the first time in history, humans have acquired a degree of “sovereignty over the world” approaching that traditionally attributed to divinity. Seeking “to examine, in the case of the atomic bomb, the effects of the invention upon the inventor” (p. 141), Teilhard de Chardin (1964) suggested that through nuclear technologies “man has not only changed the face of the earth; he has by the very act set in motion at the heart of his being a long chain of reactions which ... has made of him, virtually at least, a new being hitherto unknown to himself” (p. 141). In these theological frameworks, nuclear entelechy is linked fundamentally to human entelechy and to the fate of the natural world, illuminating crucial, emerging aspects of the human condition. One such aspect, brought to an unprecedented degree of salience by the nuclear situation, is the necessity for a critical reexamination of how discourse structures relationships among humans, technology, and the natural world. Entelechy as Rhetorical Resource As a temporal and narrative concept, entelechy emphasizes ultimate ends or outcomes. Burke (1969) described this aspect of entelechy as “the statement of essence in terms of culminations,” as demonstrated in “the narrative notion of ‘how it all ends up’” and “the logically reductive notion of ‘what it all boils down to’” (p. 15, emphasis in original). Here it is worth noting that entelechy is rooted in telos, the ultimate state toward which the system strives, but as this endstate cannot be known with certainty, identifying it is a fundamentally rhetorical activity. Thus, atomic advocates envision peaceful and prosperous, nuclear-powered futures (Boyer, 1985; Mechling & Mechling, 1995), whereas critics of the nuclear order envision violence, destruction, or human extinction (Caldicott, 1978; Rosenthal, 1991; Schell, 1982; Weart, 1989; Winkler, 1993). As “god terms” or “devil terms” (Burke, 1966), these visions provide resources for persuasion and motivation, resonating with the related themes of mystery (an unknowable telos that drives history), potency (the power attributed to that drive toward culmination), and

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secrecy (the unanswered question of what the end will be). The framework provided by the four nuclear themes is capable of accommodating a wide range of teleological visions that can interact with each other synergistically to produce consensus, or oppositionally to produce disagreement and debate. This interpretive flexibility provides a necessary resource for resisting disabling understandings of entelechy as technological or theological determinism. CONCLUSION: DISCOURSE, ENVIRONMENT, AND HUMAN AGENCY The theme of nuclear entelechy provides a basis for some concluding observations on nuclear discourse and its relationship to environmental communication. In an influential essay that was centrally concerned with entelechy, although it did not employ that term, Heidegger (1977) developed an existentialist concept of technology as a mode of “revealing.” For Heidegger, technology was a way of apprehending the world, through which the essence of the world is revealed to humans, but also a way by which the essence of humanity is revealed. Through this dual revealing, both the world and the human agent (or the human species) are brought to completion. From this perspective, we can view the present nuclear situation, and the present environmental situation, as revealing the telos toward which the human community and the world are moving. Rather than responding fatalistically, we can use these signs to understand, and potentially reconstruct, ourselves and our relationship to the world. Heidegger distinguished sharply between traditional technologies such as windmills or waterwheels, which draw on the forces present in the natural world while conforming to those forces, and modern technologies such as nuclear power plants, which intervene radically in the world to reorder it for human purposes. In the latter mode, the world is viewed exclusively as a “standing reserve,” a collection of resources to be organized and made available for use. In this regard, nuclear technologies are among the most radically interventionist, or most “modern,” of all. Although they are modern in the sense of being historically new, they are also archetypical products of a modernist discursive formation that is now almost 4 centuries old. That discourse, in turn, has roots that are much older. The contemporary dilemmas posed by nuclear technologies are products of how we discursively construct the world and our relationship with it, and of how we act on the world within that conceptual framework. Nuclear discourse structures a social and cultural order in which the “conquest” of the atom provides a model, and a legitimating symbol, for the domination of nature more generally. Ultimately, that domination extends beyond the material domain to the domains of society, culture, and politics. The themes of mystery, potency, secrecy, and entelechy are useful not only for illuminating how this process has operated thus far, but also for raising questions about where the process is leading and how we might choose that endpoint more consciously.

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Masco, J. (2002). Lie detectors: On secrets and hypersecurity in Los Alamos. Public Culture, 14(3), 441–467. Mathur, P. (2001). Nuclearism: The contours of a political ecology. Social Text, 66(1), 1–18. McKibben, J. (1989). The end of nature. New York: Random House. Mechling, E. W., & Mechling, J. (1995). The atom according to Disney. Quarterly Journal of Speech, 81, 436–453. Merchant, C. (1979). The death of nature: Women, ecology, and the scientific revolution. New York: Harper & Row. Metzler, M. S. (1998). Organizations, democracy, and the public sphere: The implications of democratic (r)evolution at a nuclear weapons facility. The Electronic Journal of Communication/La Revue Electronique de Communication, 8(1). Retrieved November 26, 2004 from www.cios.org Mickunas, A., & Pilotta, J. J. (1998). Technocracy vs. democracy: Issues in the politics of communication. Cresskill, NJ: Hampton. Morland, H. (1981). The secret that exploded. New York: Random House. Nadel, A. (1995). Containment culture: American narratives, postmodernism, and the atomic age. Durham, NC: Duke University Press. Norris, C. (1992). Deconstruction and the nuclear referent. In C. Norris, Uncritical theory: Postmodernism, intellectuals, and the Gulf War (pp. 38–47). Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press. Norris, C. (1994). “Nuclear criticism” ten years on. Prose Studies, 17, 130–139. Probst, K. N., & McGovern, M. H. (1998). Long-term stewardship and the nuclear weapons complex: The challenge ahead. Washington, DC: Center for Risk Management/ Resources for the Future. Ratliff, J. N. (1997). Improving environmental advocacy: How the Hanford Education Action League challenged the Department of Energy. Journal of the Northwest Communication Association, 25, 42–59. Revelation. (1999). New York: Grove Press. Rhodes, R. (1986). The making of the atomic bomb. New York: Simon & Schuster. Risen, J. (1999, June 15). Report scolds bureaucracy for U.S. nuclear lab lapses. The New York Times, p. 12. Risen, J. (2000, June 17). Missing Los Alamos data found behind copying machine in lab. The New York Times, p. 1. Risen, J., & Gerth, J. (1999, March 6). Breach at Los Alamos: A special report. The New York Times, p. 1. Rogers, R. A. (1998). Overcoming the objectification of nature in constitutive theories: Toward a transhuman, materialist theory of communication. Western Journal of Communication, 62(3), 244–272. Rosenthal, P. (1991). The nuclear mushroom cloud as cultural image. American Literary History, 3(1), 63–92. Rouse, J. (1987). Knowledge and power: Toward a political philosophy of science. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press. Rouse, J. (1993). Foucault and the natural sciences. In J. Caputo & M. Yount (Eds.), Foucault and the critique of institutions (pp. 137–162). University Park: Pennsylvania State University Press. Roush, D., & Burger, J. (2001). Using an ecological index to explain environmental attitudes about Idaho’s Department of Energy site. In C. B. Short & D. Hardy-Short (Eds.), Proceedings of the fifth biennial conference on communication and environment (pp. 52–58). Flagstaff: Northern Arizona University School of Communication. Rutherford, E. (1962). The collected papers, vol. I. New York: Allen and Unwin.

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CHAPTER FOUR

Narrative Inclusions and E c x lusions in a Nuclear Controversy1

Jennifer Duffield Hamilton Center for Health and Environmental Communication Research University of Cincinnati

Our understanding of the world is, to a significant extent, built through narrative accounts that insert our experiences into the logic of an unfolding narrative. In this logic, actors are positioned as subjects (with specific agendas), potential or confirmed helpers (who are or might be of some help if one can mobilize them), and potential or confirmed opponents (who are or might be hindering one’s goal). Cooren (2001) developed a framework to analyze social controversies as conflicts among such narrative accounts told by various social actors. This framework applies A. J. Greimas’ (1987) semiotic analysis of narratives to social controversies, arguing that an “isomorphism … exists between the general structure of a narrative and the organization of coalitions” (Cooren, 2001, p. 183). When applied to controversies, a semio-narrative framework reveals the narrative processes through which actors make sense of a controversy and attempt to create connections among their interests to resolve a dispute. This chapter analyzes a conflict that took place in 1995 within the communities surrounding the Department of Energy (DOE) site located at Fernald, Ohio. The Fernald case, like many controversies, revolved around competing priorities or objectives that can be analyzed as quests operating within contending storylines. The competing priorities in this controversy concerned rare radium stored at Fernald, which was thought to be the largest known stockpile in the world. A team of cancer researchers felt the radium was necessary to further a promising cancer treatment they were developing. Fernald-area residents questioned whether extracting the radium from other hazardous wastes for medical use might slow down 1 A version of this chapter was presented at the 86th Annual Meeting of the National Communication Association, Seattle, Washington, November 2000. Sponsored by the Environmental Communication Commission.

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the cleanup process underway for these wastes, which were a health concern because of the radon gas they leaked. The interests at play and the competing quests that developed in the radium case reflect the complexity of social controversies in which multiple layers of positions unfold throughout the episodes of a conflict. The radium case reflects a “heavily sedimented context of nuclear debate … [which] encourages readers to simplistically code discourse as partisan (as either pro or anti), despite researchers’ attempts to the contrary” (Taylor, 1996, p. 122). The context of nuclear debate is marked by powerful dilemmas, posed by the nuclear age, between destructive and peaceful uses of the atom and between patriotism and self-preservation, which are navigated by the actors involved in these controversies. Understanding the nature and persistence of such controversies requires a critical framework capable of uncovering the multiple layers of positions as well as the affiliations and oppositions that develop within and among actors in the progression of a controversy, which partly account for this “heavily sedimented context.” In this chapter, I am concerned with narrative mechanisms that might explain how this and other controversies are resolved or finally appear unsolvable. Through semio-narrative analysis of the radium case, I demonstrate the ways in which actors hold multiple, partial, simultaneous, and conflicting agendas that may shift over time due in part to the influence of narratives constructed by other actors in the controversy. The Fernald case revealed a narrative mechanism by which the actors included or excluded particular elements from their account according to a global or local definition of the scene for this issue—a cancer-ravaged world in need of a cure or a community in need of site cleanup and protection of public health. These inclusions and exclusions were a mechanism for narrating this controversy in ways that would mobilize other actors in pursuit of their quest and would allow the actors to balance their multiple agendas. This chapter contributes to an understanding of nuclear and environmental controversies in two ways. First, it reveals the way that conflict develops as various parties interpret the same events differently by inserting them into the unfolding logic of separate and, at times, competing narratives. Second, it offers one explanation of the ability or inability of actors to resolve controversy. My argument is that narrative inclusions or exclusions can either enable or prevent the actors from forging associations among their agendas and, therefore, offer an explanation of how conflict is or is not resolved. The complex and persistent nature of nuclear and environmental controversies is due in part to quests that involve a balancing of multiple priorities by the actors, which may influence their ability to produce translations among agendas. In the sections that follow, I discuss current research on nuclear controversies and narratives, present the semio-narrative method of analysis, and place the radium controversy within its historical context. After analyzing the three episodes of the controversy, the chapter concludes with a discussion of what a semio-narrative framework contributes to our understanding of nuclear conflicts and the ability of social actors to find resolutions.

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NUCLEAR CONTROVERSIES AND NARRATIVE The dual visions of radium in this debate as a contaminant of the earth and human health and as a rare element that promises a cancer cure parallel dual visions of nuclear elements as capable of both destructive and peaceful outcomes. These visions are akin to what Walter Fisher (1984/1995) described as “rival stories” in his analysis of the narrative rationality of nuclear controversy: “The dynamic of this situation is that rival stories are being told. Any story ... not only says something about the world, it also implies an audience, persons who conceive of themselves in very specific ways …. In the instance of [nuclear] protest, the rival factions’ stories deny each other in respect to self-conceptions and the world” (p. 285). For nearly 2 decades after Fisher’s argument, communication scholars have investigated the public moral debates that assert visions of what the nuclear order “should be.” Communication scholars have studied the symbolic practices by which this has taken place, in forms such as presidential speeches (Bjork, 1988; Medhurst, 1990), popular texts (Mechling & Mechling, 1995), and peace and nuclear freeze rhetoric (Goldzwig & Cheney, 1984). (For a complete review, see Taylor, 1998.) These studies have shown how the language of “nukespeak” operates through key terms and strategies such as domestication and bureaucratization to normalize our understanding of nuclear weapons and constrain public debate (Brummett, 1989; Kauffman, 1989; Schiappa, 1989). They also have shown how antinuclear organizations have challenged the assumptions of official discourse such as deterrence strategy and mutually assured destruction (Mehan & Wills, 1988; Ratliff, 1997a), and undermined a reliance on technical expertise with a populist appeal that “everyone ought to participate in the debate over security matters, no matter how complex the issues” (Mehan, Nathanson, & Skelly, 1990, p. 148). The radium case is one of many recent controversies that reflect the expansion of such debates into environmental contexts involving cleanup of radioactive and hazardous waste threatening public health within the communities surrounding DOE sites. This body of research has revealed ideological struggle among interests competing to establish the meaning of nuclear symbols within American culture. These studies examine key sites in which this struggle plays out, such as nuclear weapons organizations (Freer, 1994; Gusterson, 1996; Kinsella, 2001; Taylor, 1990), grassroots organizations (Ratliff, 1997a), and historical accounts of nuclear events (Hubbard & Hasian, 1998; Prosise, 1998; Taylor, 1997b; Taylor & Freer, 2002). Here, nuclear stakeholders assert and contest interpretations of events such as the making and dropping of the atomic bomb, the subsequent nuclear arms race, and, more recently, the environmental cleanup of the nuclear weapons complex. Conflicting ideologies, risk rationalities, and interpretive frames have been identified as the underpinnings of controversy in the interaction among nuclear organizations and neighboring communities or grassroots groups (Gusterson, 1996; Hamilton, 2003; Taylor 1997b). For example, Taylor (1997b) observed a controversy

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among antinuclear activists and pronuclear museum and laboratory officials at the Bradbury Science Museum over the historical interpretation of the making of the atomic bomb at the Los Alamos National Laboratory. Another important example is Gusterson’s (1996) study of the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, which traces the situated practices by which nuclear weapons scientists and antinuclear activists are socialized into a particular ideology and reveals the inability of these ideologies to transform one another. Within these sites of symbolic struggle, nuclear stakeholders also confront internal dilemmas among competing commitments, as Lindee (1994) showed in her study of government scientists researching the long-term health effects of radiation on atomic bomb survivors. The scientists navigated conflicting personal goals of helping those victims and making a scientific contribution to the understanding of radiation effects. Dilemmas within and among nuclear stakeholders are shaped by a culture, described in these studies using the metaphor of “containment” (Nadel, 1995), which constrains the sense-making activities of actors. In a post-Cold War period, expertise has displaced secrecy as a mechanism for containing nuclear knowledge and who participates in its production (Kinsella, 2001). Despite the DOE’s recent efforts to declassify documents and adhere to legal mandates for public participation, these studies reveal remnants of control and secrecy that continue to operate within new mandates for openness (Metzler, 1997; Ratliff, 1997b). An important project within this literature, and one relevant to my goal here, is Taylor’s (1990, 1993a, 1993b, 1997a, 1997b) exploration of the function of narratives in this ongoing cultural dialogue. Taylor has conceived of nuclear narratives variously as life histories told by nuclear weapons scientists (1990) or women impacted by nuclear weapons production (1993b, 1997a), popular-cultural narratives as depicted in nuclear films (1993a), and historical narratives told by museum or nuclear officials and counterhistorical narratives offered by peace groups or advisory groups (1997b; Taylor & Freer, 2002). These narratives contribute to the cultural dialogue studied by nuclear critics in several important ways. In some instances, these narratives were used by actors to revise “conventional and ‘official’ understanding” of nuclear weapons (Taylor, 1993b, p. 268), whereas in others opposing interests used narratives to assert and resist interpretations of the making and dropping of the bomb (Taylor, 1997b). Historical narratives have “opened dialogue between diverse communities that held competing and contradictory memories” (Hubbard & Hasian, 1998, p. 363; see also Prosise, 1998). Through revealing the role of narratives in transmitting ideology and creating identity, these studies depict “how official and popular narratives shape the public experience of nuclear weapons” (Taylor, 1993a, p. 367). In Taylor’s series of studies, the analysis of narratives uncovers ideologies circulating and competing for authority within nuclear culture and focuses attention on the struggle “between groups holding competing narratives” (Taylor & Freer, 2002, p. 563). The goal of a semio-narrative analysis used here is somewhat different. For Cooren (2001), narrative analysis allows us to uncover the structure of

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social controversies by tracing their parallels with the structure of narratives. Tracing this structure uncovers the processes by which coalitions are organized during a conflict as actors attempt to narratively mobilize others as helpers in attaining their goals. A primary advantage of a semio-narrative framework is that it allows the critic to analyze the ways in which narratives progress and shift throughout the controversy as well as how they respond and interact with other narratives. Such a dynamic approach is capable of capturing the multilayered, evolving, and episodic nature of public debates. Another advantage is its focus on the actors’ processes for narratively constructing a controversy and potential affiliations with other actors. This provides the critic with a specific method of analysis for exploring how a controversy is navigated by the actors through identifying successes and failures in their attempts at mobilization. Although the framework is limited in its focus on universal structures that can be identified in any narrative form, it presents the advantage of focusing on the narrative mechanisms involved in any account of reality that might explain how controversies tend to evolve in general. SEMIO-NARRATIVE ANALYSIS OF SOCIAL CONTROVERSIES A. J. Greimas (1987) argued that all narratives share similar patterns that can be recognized in the details of storytelling. His semio-narrative approach traces the general structure of narratives in which episodes create a hierarchy that organizes a story. Extending Greimas’ approach, Cooren (2001) presented a new analytical framework that explains how social controversies exhibit organizing properties similar to those Greimas identified. Greimas outlined what he called actantial roles played by the participants. They are organized into the following pairs: sender/receiver, subject/object, opponent/helper. The sender is someone or something that compels the receiver to take on a particular quest, which typically forms in response to a problem in need of resolution. If the receiver accepts the mission, he or she becomes a subject and the quest becomes the object of the mission. Along the path to fulfilling this quest, the subject cultivates helpers who aid him or her in fulfilling the mission and in overcoming obstacles or opponents that present difficulties (for examples of these actantial roles in popular movies such as Star Wars and the James Bond series, see Cooren 1999, 2000, respectively). If we take as an example the Disney movie Beauty and the Beast, the Beast’s quest was initiated by an enchantress who transformed him from a handsome prince into a gruesome beast, a spell that would only be broken if he learned to love and be loved by another before his 21st birthday. From his point of view, the situation could be depicted as follows: Sender: the enchantress. Receiver/subject: the Beast.

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Object: to learn to love. Potential helper: Belle; his servants. Potential opponent: his own selfishness and unkindness. In this quest, Belle, a woman from a nearby village, appeared to be a helper. The Beast had manipulated Belle into agreeing to live in his castle in the hopes that she would fall in love with him and break the spell. Alternatively, if we consider Belle the subject, the roles would shift to reflect her particular quests, helpers, and opponents. For Belle, the Beast functions as an opponent in her quest to escape the castle and return to her village. As this simple example shows, a semio-narrative analysis can examine multiple actors and agendas within a conflict and recognizes that an actor who might be a helper for one subject could play the role of opponent for another. In addition, narratives share similar patterns, or “phases,” as Cooren (2000) preferred to call them. The organizational structure of a controversy is found by outlining a narrative schema that incorporates iterations of four phases. The first phase, called manipulation, corresponds to a sender giving a receiver a mission or a receiver taking on a quest that is typically the result of a problem in need of resolution. In this example, a disorder was caused when the enchantress cast her spell requiring the Beast to overcome his selfishness and learn to love. The next phase, competence, involves a series of actions by which the subject attempts to mobilize whatever helpers and overcome whatever opponents are needed to fulfill the quest. For the Beast, mobilizing Belle as a helper first involved imprisoning her in his castle and then learning from his servants (who emerge as other helpers) how to court her and win her love. The third phase, called performance, emerges when the subject fulfills the quest or resolves the tension or disorder. The performance phase of the Beast’s narrative occurred when he and Belle professed their love for one another. After the quest is either fulfilled or thwarted, Greimas (1987) envisioned a fourth phase, sanction, which involves recognition that the task is or is not complete or an acknowledgment that the tension has or has not been resolved. At the climax of Beauty and the Beast, the spell was broken and the Beast was transformed back into a human, which served as the sanction that his quest had been completed. Using this narrative schema, Greimas outlined a method to trace the structure of narrative episodes or activities and to think of them as a series of communication exchanges during iterations of the four phases. These four phases can be traced in social controversies as well. As Cooren explained, “A controversy, like any narrative, always starts because at least one party feels that an order has been jeopardized in one way or another” (2001, p. 183). He drew a parallel, pointing out that the competence phase(s) typically involve the two parties’ attempts to rally support for their position and create hindrances for their opponents. Key to this mobilization process during the competence phase are the concepts of association and dissociation, taken from the work of Callon (1986)

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and Latour (1986) and used by Cooren (2001) to reveal how controversies are structured in ways similar to a narrative. Association and dissociation describe the processes, respectively, of connecting various interests with and distancing interests from one’s project. Once an association is in place, a translation exists in which the interests of one are now understood in terms of the other. Cooren wrote, “Translating someone or something thus amounts to inserting her/him/it into a given narrative schema” (2001, p. 184). Mobilizing other actors, therefore, consists of associating them with one’s goals by being able to translate one’s own quest into their terms, making it compatible with their agenda. In the Beauty and the Beast example, the Beast made his quest to become human again compatible with Belle’s desire for a life beyond the provincial town where she grew up. Both quests could be fulfilled by falling in love; therefore, the Beast translated his quest into Belle’s terms and mobilized her as a helper. Cooren found these tactics to be prime strategies in building coalitions within a social controversy.2 This method reveals that in the progression of a controversy, several parties may have competing interests on an issue and may attempt to muster support for their positions and eliminate hindrances to achieving their respective objectives (Cooren, 2001). Analyzing these moves during a social controversy reveals a hierarchy in which episodes are inserted into the logic of previous episodes to organize the controversy, and demonstrates the ways that actors make sense of events by reinterpreting actions or inserting them into their narrative schemata. Just as Cooren demonstrated that association and dissociation enhance scholars’ ability to understand mobilization processes, this chapter argues that Kenneth Burke’s concept of circumference (1969a) helps us to understand a narrative mechanism by which actors include or exclude narrative elements to recruit others to their agenda. Burke focused on the terms and strategies that people use to define situations and interpret experiences to induce cooperation in others (1984). As shown by Burke, the rhetorical strategy of circumference accomplishes this by defining a particular context, location, or scope for discussing an issue in order to influence the adoption of a particular interpretation. People make “a distinct choice of circumference for the placement of human motives” (Burke, 1969a, p. 78). Through altering the scope of the scene in which an act occurs, an actor can alter the interpretation of that act. When actors narrow or widen the circumference for discussing an act, they emphasize different aspects of the situation.

2 Burke’s understanding of identification (1969b) as an attempt to overcome our division from others by joining interests and developing common terms for understanding our experiences is similar to Callon’s (1986) and Latour’s (1986) description of association as the way that actors motivate others to join them by connecting their interests to the project. In narrative terms, identification is when an actor comes to understand his/her interests in terms of another actor’s agenda.

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The strategy of circumference is closely related to Burke’s pentadic term of scene, a focal point of several important pentadic analyses (Birdsell, 1987; Ling, 1970; Tonn, Endress, & Diamond, 1993). These articles remind us that in a public controversy, agents define the situation or issue by emphasizing one of the pentadic terms. In his analysis of controversies over drunken driving, Gusfield (1981) showed how changing the dominant term (drinking-drivers or drinking-driving) modifies the meaning of the account. More important for my purposes here, Brummett’s (1979) analysis of the gay rights controversy illustrated how pro- and antigroups can emphasize the same pentadic term or ratio to pose competing definitions of the conflict. Similarly, in the Fernald case, the scene defined the situation for the opposing sides of the radium issue. For cancer researchers, the scene was global, a cancer-ravaged world desperately in need of a treatment. For Fernald-area residents, the scene was a local one in which the government had polluted their environment, causing an increased risk of cancer. Although Burke’s pentad enables one to see how competing definitions of the scene explain the actors’ competing definitions of the issue, a semio-narrative framework reveals the ways that competing scenes can become the foundation for what is included or excluded in the logic of unfolding and competing narratives. What is included and excluded, in turn, can influence the actors’ ability or inability to connect their agendas and overcome conflict. Burke’s concept of circumference enriches a semio-narrative framework through the inclusion of scene as a narrative element. In turn, a semio-narrative framework that traces the episodes of a social controversy and organizes them into phases of a narrative enables us to see how actors make sense of events and other actors as they unfold throughout the course of a controversy. This framework helps to explain the logic by which controversies are organized. By studying actors’ arguments narratively, the strategy of circumference— locating a discussion within a specific scene to influence the terms of debate and the range of available responses—becomes part of a narrative mechanism I refer to as inclusion or exclusion. Using narrative inclusion, actors incorporate certain elements in their stories to either create a translation among interests or resist another’s attempt to mobilize them. Similarly, using narrative exclusion, actors eliminate elements from their stories to either facilitate a translation by muting grounds for disagreement or resist a translation by muting grounds for potential agreement.3 This framework operationalizes the ways that an actor’s choice of 3

Narrative inclusion versus exclusion could be compared with Perelman and OlbrechtsTyteca’s idea of presence and absence. For these authors, an important rhetorical strategy consists of systematically passing over some aspects of a problem in silence (what they call an effect of absence), while putting forward some other aspects that seem to serve one’s interests. The things made present receive emphasis in order to “occupy the foreground of the hearer’s consciousness” (Perelman & Olbrechts-Tyteca, 1968, p. 142) while the things made absent are sometimes convincing and persuasive, even though unspoken. In narrative terms, the effect of absence/presence consists of systematically excluding from the story some key actions or characters that might hinder your quest, while highlighting other actions or actors that will appear to be perfectly inserted into the logic of the narrative.

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circumference guides what is included or excluded from his or her narrative. As we see in the case study that follows, these choices ultimately influence the actor’s ability to create associations with other actors and resolve (or not) a dilemma. BACKGROUND FOR THE FERNALD RADIUM CONTROVERSY Eighteen miles northwest of Cincinnati, Ohio, sits a 1,050-acre plot of land amid a rural community that was used by the U.S. government from 1953 to 1989 to supply uranium for defense programs. Originally called the Feed Materials Production Center (hereafter the Fernald site), the site refined uranium ore and produced uranium metal products as part of a network of 16 major sites across the country known as the “nuclear weapons complex.” The complex is comprised of “government-owned, contractor-operated facilities spread over 13 states, covering 3,900 square miles” (Cochran, Arkin, & Norris, 1988, p. 13) each with a discrete mission related to nuclear weapons research, production, or testing. The DOE and its predecessor agencies produced nuclear weapons under a national security mandate, providing the federal government with sovereign immunity from compliance with environmental laws. This insulated the DOE from regulator oversight and public scrutiny during most of the Cold War (Veiluva, 1995). In the mid-1980s, lawsuits by citizens and regulators, negative media coverage of environmental contamination, and congressional investigations into DOE’s noncompliance with environmental laws eventually opened the path for the DOE’s regulation and, for the first time, a focus on environmental management after decades of nuclear weapons production (Fehner & Gosling, 1996). Since that time, neighbors of DOE sites have participated both inside and outside the political process for cleanup decisions in order to protect the health of their communities (US DOE-FEMP, 1995). In this post-Cold War era, many DOE sites around the country have begun decades-long projects to clean up nuclear weapons production facilities according to the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA; US DOE, 1995, 1997). The Fernald site ceased production in 1989 and was placed on the National Priorities List for Superfund cleanup, which initiated the CERCLA process for environmental remediation (US DOE-FEMP, 2001). In the mid-1980s, environmental pollutants had been found in nearby land, air, and water, including the Great Miami Aquifer, a sole-source aquifer directly beneath the site that provides drinking water for the region. A key area of concern since the cleanup began has been two silos of mixed hazardous waste materials. These silos were the largest source of airborne radioactivity at the Fernald site, containing wet waste residues, referred to as “K-65 waste,” which produce high levels of radon gas. The silos were constructed in 1951 for temporary storage of these wastes (FFI, 2001). Contained within the wastes was the radium desired by cancer researchers for a treatment they were developing. Cancer specialists from the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York City have led a multidisciplinary team of experts in investigating a cancer

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treatment based on the radioisotope bismuth-213, which can be produced from radium-226. This effort has included institutions within the “cancer establishment” (Moss, 1989) as well as a DOE laboratory, the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. The potential use of radioisotopes as a treatment for cancer has been known since the mid-1940s. A New York Times Magazine article dated 1946 noted, “The research that brought about the atomic bomb has now also put radioactive atoms of many kinds into mass production. The result will be a tremendous step forward in the attack on the mysteries of human health, disease and longevity” (Davis, 1946, p. 15). The first government commitment to medical applications of atomic energy came in 1946 with the announcement of a new policy to supply radioisotopes for use in science and medicine (“Availability of Radioactive,” 1946), described by some as “constituting the first peacetime benefits to result from the atom bomb program” (“Atom Smashers,” 1946, p. 80). Most of the early isotopes were produced from the uranium chain-reacting pile located at the DOE’s Clinton Laboratories in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, and were distributed to hospitals, universities, research laboratories, and clinics for use in scientific research and for diagnosing and treating diseases such as cancer (Davis, 1946). The DOE supplies radioactive isotopes for medical research, diagnoses, and therapy through its Isotopes Program, run by the Office of Nuclear Energy, Science, and Technology. Historically, there have been limited supplies of radioisotopes for medical applications. DOE locations that produce radioisotopes include the Brookhaven National Laboratory in New York, the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory, the Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico, and the Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee (US DOE-NE, 2003, May). Because the Fernald site is not a supplier of isotopes, when this cancer research team was alerted to a source of radium at Fernald by one of its employees they initiated discussions directly with site officials rather than through the Isotope Program. The cancer treatment this research team was investigating required bismuth-213, an alpha-emitting isotope that can be made from radium-226. With a shorter half-life than that of frequently used beta radiation treatments, it kills cancer cells and decays before damaging surrounding tissue. This became a promising treatment when a parallel discovery by chemical engineers revealed an antibody that carries the radiation directly to the cancer cells (Bonfield, 1995, August 8). Clinical trials began in fall 1995, just after the public meeting with Fernald neighbors analyzed here, when the treatment was used on myeloid leukemia patients. Researchers knew that if the clinical trials were successful, more radium would be needed than the limited supply available at that time (Gallagher, 1995, August 9). Radium is a rare element that can be found in nature in only trace amounts. Fernald’s silos contained 4,500 grams, the largest known stockpile, mixed with 20 million pounds of hazardous waste, which would have to be chemically extracted from the K-65 silos described earlier for the cancer researchers’ use. These researchers learned of the radium at Fernald at a time when the site’s remediation plan included converting the hazardous waste into glass beads (a process known as

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vitrification) and shipping it for permanent disposal. Cancer researchers met with Fernald officials about the possibility of extracting the radium before the waste was vitrified (Gallagher, 1995, August 6), which could have meant a delay in vitrification and Fernald’s cleanup schedule. This sparked a public discussion over the issues of site cleanup and advancing this cancer treatment, and the future of Fernald’s radium dictated by each. In the radium controversy, these two issues were linked in an ironic fashion. At Fernald, the same hazardous agents that were by-products of nuclear weapons production and that may have increased the local incidence of cancer also contained the promise of a cancer treatment. In a different context, both goals might have been attainable; however, the circumstances at Fernald created a situation in which these agendas competed for priority. On one side, neighbors were concerned that a possible delay in the cleanup schedule for Fernald might prolong human and environmental health risks. On the other side, researchers claimed that if they could not obtain the radium at Fernald, the development of a promising cancer treatment might be thwarted. This intersection of interests set the conditions for a public discussion over two questions: Was it possible to find any form of compatibility between the two agendas? If not, which goal should take priority in deciding the future of Fernald’s radium? In May 1995, cancer researchers met with Fernald employees regarding the extraction of the radium from other hazardous wastes in the silos. On July 2nd, the Cincinnati Enquirer revealed that radium contained in Fernald’s silos was needed by cancer researchers to advance a potential cancer treatment. On August 6th, the Cincinnati Enquirer printed an exclusive interview with the head of the cancer team, stressing the urgency of the situation. Two days following this exclusive, Fernald officials arranged for time at a regularly scheduled public meeting for area neighbors to meet with a representative of the cancer research team to hear about the medical interest in the radium stored on site and to discuss their concerns. In what follows, I use a semio-narrative approach to analyze the transcript of the August 1995 public meeting and the newspaper coverage surrounding this meeting as a series of episodes within this controversy. ANALYSIS OF THE FERNALD RADIUM CONTROVERSY The key actors in this controversy4—Dr. Mike Wilson, a medical physicist speaking for the cancer research team; Emily Smith, a Fernald community leader; Fernald site officials; and Mike Gallagher, a Cincinnati Enquirer reporter—reflected at least two 4 “Mike Wilson” and “Emily Smith” are pseudonyms that I have assigned to the key actors of this debate to maintain the privacy of these individuals. The phrase “Fernald site officials” is used to encompass the Department of Energy and its site remediation contractor, the Fernald Environmental Restoration Management Corporation, renamed Fluor Daniel Fernald in September 1996 and Fluor Fernald, Inc. in January 2000.

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quests to varying degrees: advancing cancer research by obtaining radium, and protecting Fernald neighbors from health risks by maintaining the site’s cleanup schedule. In narrative terms, the intersection of these quests created a dilemma over which goal should take priority in deciding the future of Fernald’s radium. The analysis that follows is presented in three episodes that organized this controversy: the private meeting, the newspaper coverage, and the public meeting. In these sections, I identify the ways in which participants inserted others as helpers or obstacles into their respective narratives, and highlight the different meanings attributed to the same events by the cancer researcher and Fernald neighbors. This is illustrated in Fig. 4.1 as a series of insertions into the actors’ respective narrative schemata according to a global or local circumference for this issue. The “Private Meeting” Episode of the Radium Controversy From the cancer researchers’ point of view, a disorder was caused by the scarcity of radium for this promising research, triggering a quest to obtain radium. At that time, the Fernald wastes containing radium were scheduled to be vitrified or turned into glass beads, and then shipped offsite for long-term disposal. Therefore, a sense of urgency about saving the radium at Fernald before it was vitrified led to a manipulation phase in which Dr. Wilson served as a receiver/subject taking on this quest as a representative of the research team. Cancer researchers tried several avenues—such as meeting with site officials, talking with local reporters, and meeting with Fernald neighbors—to obtain a source of radium. These actors served as potential helpers or

FIG. 4.1. Global and local circumferences for the radium controversy and insertions to the narrative schemata.

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opponents whom Dr. Wilson needed to mobilize or overcome during his quest. His actions can be seen as a series of competence phases, none of which succeeded in obtaining an agreement. This quest operated on a global level because the imperative to find a cure for cancer was seen as a universal value in our society. In this quest, cancer researchers’ initial attempt involved traveling to Fernald in May 1995 and meeting with site officials about obtaining the radium contained in Fernald silos. This meeting was an effort to mobilize site officials as potential helpers by associating their quest with the officials’ agenda; however, the request for the radium introduced concerns about potential delays in the remediation schedule. Cancer researchers hoped to delay vitrification to allow time to chemically extract the radium before it was vitrified. Site officials estimated that if they assisted cancer researchers and extracted the radium, it would potentially add a year or two to the cleanup schedule, making it 12 years instead of 10 (“Radium: Don’t Abandon,” 1995). Later, during the August public meeting, an official characterized the DOE position on radium extraction, saying, “We’ve looked at the schedule impacts by doing that ... and we think there may be a win/win in this in the fact that we can vitrify the material and still get the radium out at some future time” (Transcript, 1995, pp. 28–29). This statement suggests that the site officials’ solution to this dilemma was to offer cancer researchers the ability to extract radium after vitrification. This proposition could be understood as an attempt to create a point of translation by making their quests compatible. Postvitrification extraction would enable cleanup to continue on schedule and permit the use of the radium by researchers at a later date, thus fulfilling both quests. Cancer researchers rejected this possibility, indicating that the radium would not be in a usable form after vitrification and that the Fernald silos housed the only viable source of radium. Fernald site officials, in essence, indicated that they would study the issue further and continue to search for alternative sources of radium, but that they considered postvitrification extraction to be the “win/win” solution. For cancer researchers, this amounted to a “no,” and after this trip had failed to obtain an agreement site officials appeared to function as obstacles rather than helpers in obtaining the radium. During this competence phase, Fernald site officials functioned not only as potential helpers, but also as an obligatory passage point (Callon, 1986)—actors who appear to be essential to the quest. The site officials’ proposition of postvitrification extraction, however, resisted this and dissociated them from the cancer researchers’ quest. Note that, at this point, site officials appeared to be the only interlocutors who could help the cancer researchers obtain the radium; therefore, the significant role that neighbors played in the political context for Fernald decisions had not been recognized. The “New spaper Coverage” Episode of the Radium Controversy After the failed meeting with site officials, a second competence phase began as Dr. Wilson contacted a reporter working for the Cincinnati Enquirer, Mike Gallagher,

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to inform him about the urgency of the medical interest in the radium. This coverage quoted Dr. Wilson as saying, “Citizens not only in Cincinnati, but across the United States and the world have to be told of the importance of saving a medically priceless cache of radium from destruction at Fernald” (Gallagher, 1995, August 7, p. A6).The Cincinnati Enquirer reporter had been inserted into Wilson’s narrative as a helper in his effort to inform the broader public of this issue. On July 2nd, Gallagher introduced the radium issue to the Cincinnati public as a situation in which “medically priceless,” “rare radium” needed for a potential cure for cancer was “locked inside the radioactive waste in the [Fernald] silos” (Gallagher, 1995, July 2, p. A1). This coverage adopted Wilson’s narrative, portraying Fernald’s cleanup schedule as hampering this possible breakthrough in cancer research. For example, one of the articles claimed that “obtaining Fernald’s radium could one day help save millions of lives … but the radium may instead end up in a bomb crater in Nevada as the U.S. Department of Energy moves forward to cleanup” (Gallagher, 1995, July 2, p. A1). In this early coverage Fernald neighbors were absent from the narrative told by the Cincinnati Enquirer. On July 16th, after 2 weeks and little reaction, Gallagher wrote an article restating the issue in stronger terms, claiming that “the planned destruction of the world’s largest radium supply at Fernald is, in effect, a death sentence for many current and future cancer patients” (Gallagher, 1995, July 16, p. A1). Finally, on August 6th—the 50th anniversary of Hiroshima—Gallagher reported an exclusive interview with the head of the cancer research effort, who detailed the breakthrough in this research, its dependence on Fernald’s rare radium, and the announcement that clinical trials would begin in fall 1995. Gallagher portrayed a world stage on which medical physicists have been following this cancer treatment. Gallagher quoted a medical physicist from Berlin as saying, “This could change medical history,” and a nuclear bio-medical researcher from Tokyo as saying that “the work of these men has been kept very much secret until now, but their findings could change the world” (Gallagher, 1995, August 6, p. A1). These comments from across the world muted the concerns of Fernald-area residents by appealing to a universal desire to cure cancer. The newspaper coverage, lasting primarily from July to September 1995, evolved over this period in several important ways. First, with the announcement of the upcoming public meeting, the initial narrative that involved a dilemma between cancer researchers and Fernald officials expanded to include neighbors as well. For example, on the day of the public meeting, reporter Gallagher depicted their story this way: “The possibility that radium … is the key to a cancer cure raises questions and fears among people living near the former uranium- processing plant. Those residents have fought a bitter battle to force the government to cleanup and remove the radioactive waste. Delaying that cleanup, even for a possible cancer cure, has them torn” (Gallagher, 1995, August 8, p. A4). Gallagher’s coverage had grown more sophisticated in its recognition of the Fernald neighbors as key actors as well.

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In narrative terms, Gallagher functioned as a helper for Wilson, because he was a gatekeeper of information and was capable of informing the public about the hurdles to this research. Informing the public about this promising research was one way to position them as potential helpers and mobilize public support for radium extraction. The “private meetings” held with site officials to request the radium and the “newspaper coverage” that alerted the community to the medical interest in the radium, however, were two episodes that triggered a quest for Fernald neighbors to secure the timetable for site cleanup and restore a public process for Fernald decision making. These events were presented by neighbors as disrupting citizen involvement in site decisions and progress on site cleanup. This quest was local because the objective was to protect the health of Fernald neighbors and of their environment, but it was also part of the larger context for the DOE environmental remediation described earlier. When Fernald neighbors read in the Cincinnati Enquirer about the May 1995 meeting between the cancer team and site employees, they interpreted these talks as being closed meetings that excluded the public. They inserted the closed meetings into their schema as an obstacle to public input. This interpretation set Dr. Wilson up as an adversary who did not respect the role of the public in Fernald decisions, and as someone who could jeopardize site cleanup. One neighbor expressed this view in the August 8 public meeting: “We want you to work with us … talk with us, and come in and meet with us because we are willing to do that. And not just one person behind closed doors in secret meetings, but with open public participation and open public debate, and open public process …. Don’t make decisions without us! Our lives are at stake here, you know” (Transcript, 1995, p. 56). The neighbors cast his actions as a barrier to their collaboration and as reflecting a view that they were not full participants in an open process. Wilson’s insertion as an opponent in the neighbors’ schema began when he approached the Cincinnati Enquirer rather than the community members themselves. From the neighbors’ point of view, Wilson’s decision to use media reports as the source of public information violated established participation mechanisms. At Fernald, officials interacted directly with community members through regular public meetings and one-on-one informal channels (US DOE-FEMP, 1995) and did not rely on the newspapers to inform key community leaders. Issues normally were brought to the Fernald public’s attention early in the process; however, in this case, the public knew nothing about the medical interest in Fernald’s radium until the Cincinnati Enquirer coverage. During the meeting, Emily Smith called attention to this fact, saying, “We [neighbors] read it in the newspaper. That’s when we found out about it. That pretty much shoots the hell out of the public participation process here” (Transcript, 1995, p. 51). Using the newspaper as the channel of communication to the public represented a threat, because Wilson had circumvented the public process in place for this community and created a situation described by Smith as “deja vu back to 1985” (Transcript, 1995, p. 51) and to the days

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of DOE secrecy: “It bothers us that you came in the back door … that’s not the way we do things around here” (Transcript, 1995, pp. 51–52). Public opinion developed against Dr. Wilson’s proposal partly because neighbors first learned about his request for Fernald’s radium by reading these articles. From a narrative point of view, Wilson treated public participation as a mechanism to pressure DOE, whereas for Fernald neighbors, it was a mechanism for democratic decisions. The private meeting and newspaper coverage episodes, during which the actors and agendas were introduced, were the backdrop for a public meeting held on August 8, 1995. The “Public Meeting” Episode of the Radium Controversy To remedy this disorder, DOE site officials allotted time at a regularly scheduled public meeting on August 8th for Fernald neighbors to hear of the medical interest in the radium and discuss their concerns with Dr. Wilson. Site officials helped the citizens by arranging this discussion and thereby opening the public process on this issue. The trust that was broken when Fernald site officials met privately with cancer researchers prevented neighbors and site officials from presenting a united front during the controversy; however, their quests were closely aligned. They both wanted cleanup to proceed, and they both wanted to enact a public process on this issue. Site officials and neighbors also faced the possibility that their common quest might prevent researchers from finding a treatment for cancer, which was a secondary quest for them all as members of a society that fears cancer and embraces the urgency for a cure. This created an internal tension for the neighbors between a local quest of protecting health by divesting the site of nuclear waste and a universal quest of finding a cancer treatment. For neighbors, the public meeting meant a restored public process, whereas for Dr. Wilson it was considered a crucial step in his ongoing project to obtain the radium. For him, this phase was meant to speak directly to neighbors about the urgency and merits of his proposal. For Fernald neighbors, however, this represented an important moment in which they would be able to reaffirm the necessity of maintaining the cleanup schedule in order to protect local health. During the meeting, each opponent attempted to create grounds for associating or dissociating their interests by including or excluding elements from their narration of a global or local scene. Wilson set the terms for this debate in a global arena. In terms similar to the world stage described in the newspaper coverage, Wilson located the discussion of Fernald’s radium within the broad impact that this research could have for all cancer victims. In narrative terms, he made the local context subordinate to a universal narrative—that is, to advance cancer research. The scene was cancer research, not site cleanup. Both of these pursuits could stop cancer. Wilson, however, used a much wider circumference in describing the situation than did Fernald neighbors.

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In his presentation, Wilson described the research on this new cancer therapy as “the first time any group has shown that monoclonal antibodies labeled with radioactive isotopes can be remarkably effective in treating certain forms of cancer” (Transcript, 1995, p. 35). He portrayed the obstacle to this research as the limited supply of radium—“rare radium”—and spoke of Fernald’s radium as the answer because it was “the major known stockpile of this old, undesirable form of radium … anywhere in the world” (Transcript, 1995, p. 42). Wilson described vitrification as the “permanent and final storage form for these wastes” (Transcript, 1995, p. 35). This description resisted the possibility of extracting the radium after it was vitrified, the win/win solution suggested earlier by Fernald site officials, by presenting it as a technically infeasible solution. In this way, Wilson told the story of promising cancer research that depended on Fernald’s radium to benefit current and future cancer victims, and which could only use the radium if it was extracted before it was vitrified. In essence, Wilson inserted the concept of slowing cleanup into his schema, but for him it meant advancing cancer research. Fig. 4.1 summarizes the ways in which a global circumference framed his understanding of these unfolding events. In contrast, community leaders emphasized the consequences of a delay on public health in their communities. Smith defined the terms for this debate within the local context in which neighbors and family members had developed or might develop cancer because of the hazardous wastes on site. She said, “You have to think of us as well as those you can potentially save. For some it’s already too late,” and “We care about cancer research, but at the same time we are concerned with our health and safety too” (Transcript, 1995, pp. 56–57). Fernald neighbors used a narrower circumference to change the scene of this debate from the broader context of cancer research to the local context and the impact of a cleanup slowdown on public health. The neighbors understood cleanup as “the answer to remove one of the threats to our life span” (Transcript, 1995, p. 87) and slowing cleanup as prolonging the increased risk of developing cancer. During the discussion, one neighbor described postvitrification extraction as necessary for a win/win situation, saying, “Win means that we do not slow down the cleanup process in any way …. If at some future time there is a possibility of extracting radium from vitrified material, [Wilson] wins too” (Transcript, 1995, p. 83). In this way, neighbors inserted postvitrification extraction into their schema as meaning a win/win answer, just as site officials had done. Postvitrification extraction was presented by neighbors as the passage point that would enable them to translate the interests of the cancer research team into their own interests. In this way, Fernald neighbors told the story of a community that had already sacrificed their health and environment for the government’s nuclear weapons project, a community that was being asked to make additional sacrifices for this cancer research project—a sacrifice about which they were leery, given the option of researchers acquiring the radium after it was properly stabilized. Fig. 4.1 illustrates the ways in which a

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local circumference framed how neighbors made sense of the events of this controversy. The global and local circumferences of this issue influenced the ways in which the actors interpreted the same concepts in conflicting manners, and the ways in which they attempted to create connections among their interests or resist others’ attempts to do so. During the public meeting, Dr. Wilson attempted to create support for his quest by emphasizing that residents who lived within miles of Fernald shared a powerful life circumstance with him. Wilson said, “Perhaps I relate to you also in another way. I live less than two miles from a major cleanup site, the Hanford Nuclear Reservation. I know what it’s like to live that close, and I certainly can empathize with your feelings” (Transcript, 1995, pp. 36–37). Here he proposed a bridge or association between himself and the Fernald neighbors: They were associated in their common condition of living next to a DOE installation. Just as he and his neighbors lived in the shadow of nuclear production, so did the Fernald neighbors. Just as he and his neighbors feared cancer, so did Fernald neighbors. Narratively speaking, at this point, mobilizing the support of Fernald neighbors consisted in proposing that their common fear of cancer should translate into a common quest for a cancer cure, which should incorporate a common quest to supply the radium needed to obtain that goal. What was absent from this attempt to associate their interests was the recognition of two facets of the local context: Fernald neighbors suffering from cancer and the perceived urgency to clean up the site to prevent further health risks. Dr. Wilson stated that he had no desire to affect the cleanup schedule, but he did not acknowledge that slowing cleanup might cause more cancer in the local community. In other words, he defined the situation without acknowledging this reality for neighbors. Neglecting this possibility can be seen as a strategy of narrative exclusion in which Wilson eliminated from his arguments anything that could create a dissociation between his quest and their interests. Wilson’s choice to ignore this immediate reality for neighbors created, rather than prevented, a dissociation, because for neighbors a prolonged health risk was the main issue in the story. The community leader, Emily Smith, attempted to create an association with Wilson by demonstrating to him that she and Fernald neighbors understood his sense of urgency about cancer research. She said, “We’re not a lot of cold-hearted unsympathetic folks that live out here, with regard to cancer research …. I have family members that I’ve watched die with cancer … we have lived through it and we know what it is like” (Transcript, 1995, pp. 48–49). In this statement, Smith identified with Wilson’s quest by indicating that she had personal experience with the pain of cancer and affirmed the common quest for a cure. Nevertheless, for her, this debate was not about the merits of cancer research. She and the Fernald neighbors would have welcomed a successful cancer therapy. What the debate was about was how that research might affect the cleanup schedule at Fernald and that delays might cause more cancer risks in their community. Using a local circumference, Smith inserted cancer research into her schema as an

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obstacle—that is, according to the ways in which it might delay Fernald cleanup. Smith said, “This is a moral and ethical question in our minds …. How do we sacrifice the neighbors and workers at Fernald, who have already been guinea pigs for the government … their health, safety, and lives for a potential cure for cancer?” (Transcript, 1995, pp. 50–51). In this statement, Smith used a strategy of narrative inclusion in which a narrow circumference included, even emphasized, the possibility that slowing cleanup could prolong neighbors’ health risks. Smith achieved this, in part, through characterizing Wilson’s extraction project as a sacrifice of the health of neighbors. Supporting the request for the radium would mean making local sacrifices for the greater good. By presenting Wilson’s quest as requiring neighbors to sacrifice their own quest, she portrayed the two quests as incompatible. This narrative inclusion, therefore, enabled neighbors to resist Wilson’s attempt to mobilize them by presenting grounds for dissociating their quests. Responsibility was shifted to Wilson to find another way to fulfill his quest that would not require neighbors to sacrifice their interests. What was downplayed in the neighbors’ definition of the scene was the global context of a cancer-ravaged world and the consequences to cancer victims if no radium was found for this research. In order to strengthen her argument, Smith narratively excluded the global imperative to find a cure that Wilson had placed at the heart of his argument. Just as Wilson disregarded the possibility that his request could prolong health risks to the community, so, too, neighbors downplayed the possibility that their resistance could block a breakthrough in cancer research. Muting the global reality of an urgent need for a cure could be understood as a way for neighbors to resolve their internal dilemma of wanting both a cure and site cleanup. Although they supported cancer research on a broad level, they would not support Wilson’s project at the expense of the health of their community. The tension between a local scene of cancer risk at Fernald and a global scene of cancer victims everywhere was central to the dilemma between neighbors and the cancer researcher. They shared the same overarching goal of stopping cancer, but the circumference they envisioned led to global and local versions of the same quest. Researchers proposed to stop cancer on a global level by developing a cancer treatment, whereas neighbors sought to stop cancer on a local level by eliminating the health risks in their community. Narrative inclusions and exclusions were likewise influenced by the local or global circumference. Wilson’s exclusion from his narrative of the health risks to the community discounted the local scene and maintaining the cleanup schedule as a way to stop cancer. Similarly, Smith’s exclusion of the imperative for a treatment discounted the global scene and slowing cleanup as a way to stop cancer. These narrative exclusions eventually meant that the cancer researcher and Fernald neighbors were unable to find a way to coordinate their mutual desire to fight cancer. Near the end of the meeting, Smith concluded that there were too many unknown consequences to take a position. She requested answers in writing to several

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questions: “Is there a technology out there to extract this, and, if so, what is it and who’s developing it? How long will this take? Days, months, years, decades? How much is it going to cost? Who’s going to pay for it? And where have you been?”(Transcript, 1995, p. 48). These questions served the narrative role of helper for Fernald neighbors. By asking for more information, neighbors solved their internal dilemma of choosing between removing cancer risks locally and reducing cancer globally. In effect, they did not reject Wilson’s quest to cure cancer because they did not say “no” to his proposal. However, they did not say “yes” either, which maintained their own quest of reducing local cancer risks. For cancer researchers, who needed the radium before the approaching date of vitrification, the neighbors’ request for more information meant the same thing as a “no,” and the citizens became an obstacle for them. Cancer researchers had failed to mobilize local officials’ interests in May and Fernald neighbors’ interests in August and did not obtain an agreement to extract Fernald’s radium. In September 1995, nearly a month after the public meeting, DOE headquarters responded with a solution that would involve both a study of extraction methods and a search for alternative sources of radium worldwide. Then, Energy Secretary Hazel O’Leary indicated that DOE intended to “find a mutually acceptable way to preserve the radium [for medical use] without delaying or halting the cleanup” (Gallagher, 1995, September 12, p. A4). This proclamation by the DOE essentially initiated a sanction phase for both subjects in this controversy. For Wilson, launching a worldwide search for radium and conducting research on extraction had reframed his view of Fernald as an obligatory passage point (Callon, 1986) by enabling him to continue his quest for radium elsewhere. For neighbors, remediation of the Fernald site had been secured. A public discussion had occurred, but the issue had stalled, and this meant the fulfillment of their quest as site remediation continued.5

5

In the years following this controversy, DOE’s solution was to find a source other than radium for producing the bismuth-213, the medical isotope needed for this research. DOE’s Isotope Program made plans to increase the supply of bismuth-213 and began using uranium-233 stored at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory to produce small quantities for this research (US DOE-NE, 2000, September 8). In 2003, a contract was awarded to a private company, Isotek Systems, LLC, under which they would extract isotopes from Oak Ridge’s supply of uranium-233 which would be used to produce bismuth-213. This contract is part of a DOE initiative to create public/private partnerships to increase the supply of medical isotopes. The clinical trials for this treatment are currently in Phase II (US DOE-NE, 2003, October 9). At Fernald, the “Record of Decision” stating that vitrification would be the cleanup method for the wastes containing the radium was amended in June 2000. Instead a process was chosen called cementation in which wastes are chemically stabilized. During the public hearing preceding this new Record of Decision, the radium issue was brought up again as a local physician and health physicist reported successes of the cancer research program in the intervening five years and urged DOE to consider a cleanup alternative other than vitrification or cementation that would preserve the radium for medical research.

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CONCLUSION Extending a semio-narrative approach to the analysis of controversies (Cooren, 2000, 2001) explains the ways in which actors construct narrative accounts to understand the events of a controversy and to associate others with their agenda. Applying this analytical framework to the radium controversy yielded three findings that are relevant to the study of environmental and nuclear controversies and that may extend to other social controversies as well. First, the choice of what to include or exclude in a narrative affects the ability to associate others with one’s project and achieve one’s goal. At Fernald, the failure to include or exclude elements capable of creating a translation among differing interests finally amounted to an inability to resolve the tension. The cancer researcher narratively excluded the possibility that slowing cleanup might cause more cancer in the local community in order to mute any grounds for dissociating the neighbors’ quest from his. In contrast, Fernald neighbors included this local reality to create the grounds for dissociating their quest by showing that supporting the researchers would mean sacrificing their own quest of protecting health. This narrative mechanism of inclusion or exclusion offers one explanation of why actors in any public controversy may be able or unable to resolve conflict. Second, the choice of circumference is a prominent part of how actors make sense of and organize environmental controversies. Actors attribute different meanings to the same events by inserting them into contending narrative quests; in this case, according to a global or local circumference. The cancer researcher situated the radium discussion within a global scene of a cancer-ravaged world in need of a treatment, whereas Fernald neighbors defined the issue according to a local scene of prolonged cancer risks for those living nearby. Each major action, idea, or event in this controversy was interpreted by the actors from within the scene they envisioned for their quest. The meaning of radium, cleanup, or public participation was dictated by their insertion into a schema and depended on the global or local context within which the actor located this controversy. The tension between a global and local scene offers one explanation of how conflict arises among actors in environmental controversies. Fernald neighbors’ understanding of the sacrifice that would be required of them to further cancer research reflects this relationship between local needs and a broader public interest. Environmental actors frequently are influenced by this tension between global and local circumferences, both in how they make sense of an issue and how they disagree about it.6 Third, rather than being for or against an issue, actors often come to controversies with multiple quests or priorities that must be strategically balanced to develop 6 The prominence of a local circumference in environmental controversies can be recognized in what is referred to as the NIMBY or “not-in-my-backyard” syndrome in which local concerns related to unwanted land uses (i.e., a hazardous waste facility) trigger a dispute that ultimately involves larger policy questions, such as fair allocation of risks (Dear, 1992; Freudenburg & Pastor, 1992).

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a solution. The Fernald neighbors’ main quest in the radium debate was cleanup of the site, but they certainly were not against cancer research. In fact, Fernald neighbors shared the researchers’ desire to develop a cancer treatment; however, they were leery that, in this instance, cancer research might mean additional health risks to their community. Therefore, their narrative schema balanced these goals and fulfilled their quest of reducing cancer threats locally while not opposing cancer research. This sophisticated balancing of priorities was not against cancer research while at the same time was in favor of elimination of local health risks. The Fernald case would suggest that the persistent nature of controversies is due in part to quests that reflect a balancing of multiple priorities, parts of which may or may not coincide with other actors’ agendas, which ultimately may influence whether the tension can be resolved. The strategic balancing of global and local scenes, in particular, may be endemic to environmental conflicts involving community sacrifices and the common good. Understanding the “heavily sedimented” characteristic of nuclear controversies requires a framework capable of unpacking these unfolding layers without oversimplifying their dynamic nature. This analysis demonstrates that a semio-narrative framework reveals the layers of interpretation that often impede understanding, agreement, and the resolution of conflict. The rhetorical concept of circumference enhances a narrative understanding of actors’ strategies by emphasizing the influence of scene on both their sense-making and mobilizing activities. In this case, the choice of circumference affected the actors’ ability to resolve their conflict, partly by influencing what was included and excluded from the contending narratives, and partly by guiding how actors balanced commitments to several priorities. Further research should explore actors’ strategies for balancing various goals and the influence of these strategies on the ability of actors to gain support from other participants during public deliberation of complex environmental and health risk issues. ACKNOWLEDGMENTS The author is grateful to François Cooren for his many critical insights during the development of this chapter and to Stephen Depoe for his helpful review of earlier drafts. REFERENCES Atom smashers launch war on disease. (1946). Popular Mechanics, 86, 80. Availability of radioactive isotopes: Announcement from headquarters, Manhattan Project, Washington, D.C. (1946). Science, 103, 697–705. Birdsell, D. S. (1987). Ronald Reagan on Lebanon and Grenada: Flexibility and interpretation in the application of Kenneth Burke’s pentad. Quarterly Journal of Speech, 73, 267–279. Bjork, R. S. (1988). Reagan and the nuclear freeze: “Star Wars” as a rhetorical strategy. Journal of the American Forensic Association, 24, 181–192.

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CHAPTER FIVE

Perspectives on Prescribed Burning: Issues and Directions for Developing Campaign Messages1 1

Denise E. DeLorme Nicholson School of Communication University of Central Florida Scott C. Hagen Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering University of Central Florida I. Jack Stout Department of Biology University of Central Florida

From May to July 1998, Florida experienced the “worst wildfires in the state’s history” (Roy, 1999, p. G1). More than 2,300 wildfires consumed 500,000 acres of Florida. Approximately 130,000 people were forced to evacuate, and 368 homes and businesses were damaged or destroyed. Although some families lost their homes and possessions, fortunately there were no casualties. Florida sustained considerable damage, with losses reaching over $800 million. The fires required $115 million to bring them under control (Jacobson, Monroe, & Marynowski, 2001). Across the United States and around the world, both the size and severity of wildfires have increased (Glenn, 1999; Martin, 1995). In the southeastern United 1 The research was funded in part by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Advisory Council on Environmental Education. The authors wish to thank the Audubon Society of Florida for their assistance with informant recruitment and data collection. The authors are also grateful for helpful feedback from Dr. George M. Zinkhan, Professor of Marketing at the University of Georgia.

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States, lightning and native people were responsible for frequent low-intensity fires that shaped the pattern of vegetation on the landscape (Waldrop, White, & Jones, 1992). The modern landscape is now subjected to infrequent but high-intensity wildfires. This change has been attributed to a number of interrelated causes, both natural and human. In the United States, “a century-long legacy of federal policy aimed at suppressing all fires has left behind overcrowded forests that are far more prone to large, damaging burns than they were when nature took its course” (Tangley, 2000, p. 54). Furthermore, continuing urbanization and human encroachment into areas where fires naturally and regularly occur have increased fire suppression, which over time results in a higher risk of wildfires (Beebe & Omi, 1993). This serious fire situation involves direct concerns to individual homeowners (i.e., loss of life, loss of personal property). In addition to individuals, the potential disaster has implications for residential communities and businesses (e.g., some insurance companies may raise premiums, reduce coverage, or cancel fire insurance altogether in certain areas; Beebe & Omi, 1993). How to minimize wildfire risk is a major issue of dispute outside of contemporary natural resource agencies. One possible solution is prescribed fire. Naturally occurring, unsuppressed fire initiated by lightning strikes lessens fuel loads and reduces the potential for catastrophic wildfires. However, nature and society coexist in fire prone areas. Therefore, the process of prescribed burning (also known as controlled burning) is employed as an alternative to naturally occurring fire. A prescribed burn is an intentionally set fire designed to mimic the natural role of fire. It is implemented under selected weather conditions to accomplish predetermined, well-defined management objectives (USDA Forest Service, 1989). Close examination of fire ecology reveals regenerative benefits from periodic fire, whether natural or prescribed (Division of Forestry, 1993; Myers & Ewel, 1990; USDA Forest Service, 1989). Chemically, fire recycles nutrients back into the soil and promotes seed germination and sprouting. Fire also helps to maintain an open canopy, allowing sunlight to reach the forest floor, and enhances the growth of native plants. In fact, within days of a fire, the blackened soil begins to fill with small, tender vegetation, providing a renewed food source for birds and other wildlife. As early as the 1970s, some groups of environmentalists began to persuade officials to move away from fire suppression (Tangley, 2000). Winter and Fried (2000) noted, “Fire protection agencies and land managers have increasingly looked to prescribed fire in recent years as a mechanism for reducing vegetation fuels and, consequently, the risk of property damage during wildfires” (p. 3). Recent catastrophic outbreaks of wildfires such as the 1998 Florida firestorm described earlier have increased attention to and support of prescribed burns by many policymakers and government agencies, including the Bureau of Land Management, National Parks Service, and USDA Forest Service (Glenn, 1999). Yet,

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prescribed burning remains controversial (e.g., see Pyne, 2001) and is the focus of serious debate (Hesseln, 2000). A major issue is how to apply prescribed fire in the urban-wildland interface. A second issue is the timing of prescribed burns. For example, in the southeastern United States, winter burns are less intense but do not mimic the natural fire regime, which was regulated by lightning associated with late spring and early summer (Hermann et al., 1998; Robbins & Myers, 1992). Manfredo, Fishbein, Haas, and Watson (1990) argued, “Prescribed fire policies have been justified largely by findings in the biological sciences but political, economic, social, and physical factors also affect decisions on the acceptability of fires” (p. 19). PURPOSE OF STUDY In this focus group study, we explored individual residents’ perspectives on prescribed burning, with specific interest in directions for developing messages for environmental communication campaigns to promote understanding and acceptance of this practice. The phenomenon of prescribed fires intersects multiple disciplines. From a biological standpoint, research on fire ecology associated with prescribed burning has been long-standing and prevalent. However, the social aspects of prescribed burning have received less empirical research attention. The most relevant work includes studies that have focused on residents’ perceptions of wildfire risks (e.g., Abt, Kuypers, & Whitson, 1991; Beebe & Omi, 1993; Cortner, Gardner, & Taylor, 1990; Fried, Winter, & Gilless, 1999; Gardner & Cortner, 1985; Gardner, Cortner, & Widaman, 1987; Winter & Fried, 2000), residents’ attitudes toward prescribed fires and prescribed burning policy (e.g., Cortner, Zwolinski, Carpenter, & Taylor, 1984; Gardner, Cortner, Widaman, & Stenberg, 1985; Jacobson et al., 2001; Manfredo et al., 1990), and the development of communication campaigns (e.g., Bright, 1995; Bright, Fishbein, Manfredo, & Bath, 1993; Carpenter et al., 1987; Taylor & Daniel, 1984). Overall, previous social science work on prescribed burning has examined residents’ reactions using traditional survey methods and has revealed moderately positive attitudes toward prescribed burning, but those reactions depend on a number of intervening factors (e.g., geographic location, prior wildfire experiences, knowledge of the natural role of fire, etc.). The literature emphasizes the importance of improving communications about prescribed burning, but advice has been general and limited (e.g., more about how to target messages than how to design message content). Statistical analysis of survey data has not been as readily useful in the practical application of message design due to its inability to capture the perspectives and voices of residents regarding this complex topic. Greater specificity and more concrete directions for developing campaign messages stemming from empirically derived accounts of individual residents’ views appear to be needed.

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We believe that social marketing offers a viable framework to research and design improved communication efforts about prescribed burning. Social marketing has been defined as “the design, implementation, and control of programs calculated to influence the acceptability of social ideas and involving considerations of product planning, pricing, communication, distribution, and marketing research” (Kotler & Zaltman, 1971, p. 5). This systematic approach to positive social change focuses on individual-based initiatives and offers strengths in its application of well-tested concepts and tools from private sector marketing (Andreasen, 2002). The philosophy is rooted in the concept of exchange for mutual self-interest and emphasizes the importance of research to assess and better meet the needs of target groups. Since its origins in the 1950s, social marketing has gained widespread acceptance and adoption by various federal agencies, state and local governments, and nonprofit organizations (Andreasen, 2002). Some environmentally related demonstrated achievements include encouraging people to conserve water, buy more recycled-content products, participate in voluntary ozone reduction activities, and reduce harmful lawn care practices (see www.social-marketing.org/success.html for documented results). For the present situation, social marketing is used to help increase the acceptability of prescribed burning through its structured approach of researching target groups to determine how to develop campaign messages tailored to emphasize certain benefits and reduce certain perceived costs (i.e., risks) of this practice. A review of the academic literature has identified research on various environmental topics, such as recycling and energy conservation, but no previous studies of prescribed burning from a marketing perspective (Malafarina & Loken, 1993). Thus, the purpose of the present paper is threefold: to introduce a marketing perspective to the study of prescribed burns, to explore individual residents’ first-person perspectives on prescribed burning, and to gain insight for developing campaign messages to promote better understanding and acceptance of prescribed burning. METHOD Nine focus groups were used to gather first-person accounts of experiences with and views regarding prescribed burns, as well as insight for developing campaign messages (Edmunds, 1999; Stewart & Shamdasani, 1990). The focus group data collection technique was selected because it: (a) was deemed appropriate for the exploratory goals of the study; (b) has contributed valuable insights in similar social marketing projects; (c) allows flexibility in uncovering participants’ thoughts, feelings, and experiences; (d) offers particular strengths in gathering spontaneous responses, candid comments, and diverse perspectives in the words of participants; (e) provides the opportunity to better understand how people construct their understandings of the phenomenon through real-life social interaction,

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group dynamics, and collective interpretation; and (f) can be time efficient (Berg, 2001; Frey & Fontana, 1993; Merton, Fiske, & Kendall, 1990; Morgan, 1988; Morgan & Krueger, 1993). We employed purposive sampling, which involves selecting cases to investigate based on their potential to generate information about the topic of prescribed burning (Glaser & Strauss, 1967). The criterion for case selection was residing in an area that has experienced or is at high risk for wildfire. Our goal was not to generalize to the larger population, but instead to understand how prescribed burns are perceived and experienced by participants in the present study. All focus groups were conducted with Central Florida residents. For the first six groups, we recruited participants from a statewide conservation organization, which ensured that they would have interest, but not necessarily expertise, in the topic of prescribed burns. In addition, we pinpointed geographic locations (six counties) that were directly impacted by the Florida wildfires of 1998. A pool of possible participants was gathered through membership databases, e-mails, personal contacts, and announcements at community meetings. For comparative purposes, three additional focus groups were conducted with a sample of Central Florida residents from the general population. A professional research firm was hired to recruit these participants and strived to have the groups’ composition balanced demographically and by years residing in Florida. An interview guide was devised after meetings and input from all members of the interdisciplinary research team; a careful review of literature about prescribed burns from various government, academic, and industry sources; and pretesting the instrument in a pilot focus group. The interview guide consisted of an outline of open-ended questions driven by a marketing perspective and structured around the following five topics: personal wildfire experiences; understandings of wildfire causes and prevention, including prescribed burning and alternative practices; understandings of the characteristics and processes of prescribed burns; personal experiences and opinions regarding prescribed burns, including benefits and costs (drawbacks); and recommendations for communication campaigns, including message content and style. The focus groups were semistructured; that is, the researcher used the framework of the interview guide to introduce discussion topics and to direct conversation, but moved flexibly with participants’ responses and did not necessarily follow the same order for all groups. Data collection involved audiotaping the discussions, listening attentively, observing nonverbal communication and interpersonal dynamics, and completing written field notes, which included informant profiles, details of interpersonal interaction, and reflective remarks. For consistency, the same trained investigator moderated all focus groups and was accompanied by the same research assistant. Each focus group lasted from 60 to 90 minutes. Data collection, coding, and analysis were simultaneous throughout the study (Glaser, 1992; Strauss & Corbin, 1990). After each focus group, the moderator and research assistant held a debriefing meeting in which they discussed logistics and

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group dynamics. The analysis approach was interpretative (Berg, 2001) and involved listening to the audiotapes multiple times, transcribing all of the group discussions verbatim, and examining the 257 total pages of data line by line, using procedures of analytic induction and comparative analysis (Miles & Huberman, 1984; Strauss & Corbin, 1990). The coding process initially involved unrestricted “open coding” in which the units (i.e., words, phrases, sentences) of thought, feeling, and action were determined from the interpreted meaning of the data and categories were developed inductively (Berg, 2001; Strauss & Corbin, 1990). Then, comparative analysis generated relationships among the categories and integration of categories produced emergent themes. FINDINGS The findings reported in this study are based on nine focus groups involving a total of 80 participants (groups of 9, 13, 9, 9, 6, 10, 7, 11, and 6 residents, respectively). Ages ranged from 19 to 87, with an average age of 55. Fifty-one percent were men and 49% were women. All but six were homeowners, the majority had lived in Florida for over 10 years, and slightly more than half had completed college. They held a variety of occupations. Issues With Prescribed Burning Analysis of residents’ perspectives uncovered a number of issues with prescribed burning that have implications for the development of campaign messages. These issues include the following emergent themes: risks to human health and safety, risks to wildlife health and safety, low awareness of prescribed burn schedules, smoke- and ash-related inconveniences, disinterest in environmental subject matter, and weak self-efficacy in minimizing wildfire hazards.

In terms of risks to human health and safety, the main issues with prescribed burning included: starting a wildfire accidentally, smoke-related respiratory problems, smoke-related traffic accidents, and encouraging children to play with fire. Participants were aware of risks posed by prescribed burns and of accidents that have occurred due to natural forces or human error. Understanding that prescribed burns have the potential to get out of hand and become dangerous wildfires was common (“The thing that frightens me—say you have a controlled burn set up … and the wind changes. We are in deep trouble … . I think this is what most people are concerned about,” “There’s always the risk of life”). From media publicity, personal stories, or direct experience, participants were aware of accidents that have occurred (“Some of them did get out of control

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and that was frightening,” “There was a controlled burn that was on our front pages … this was talking about the amount of houses that were lost because of this wind shift and they were totally unprepared … to have that on your front page is absolutely frightening,” “It only hits the news when it goes awry. That means that our perception is generally that prescribed burns can lead to trouble.”). Most participants agreed that smoke associated with prescribed fires could make breathing troublesome (“I think the smoke is the big problem,” “People in a development on the other side of a road from a controlled burn when the smoke blows in … you get, “Nobody told me!” “It’s choking me!” … You get some real opposition”). Particular issues were expressed regarding the health impact of smoke on children, the elderly, and individuals with preexisting respiratory problems such as asthma and emphysema (“Burning, especially if you get near a city area where you have these inversions in the summertime where it holds the smoke in is a serious health problem because that smoke doesn’t go away. It hangs around for a long time,” “Contaminants in the air,” “There is some risk involved for anyone, but particularly if you have a breathing problem to begin with”). Additionally, some residents mentioned health risks in terms of traffic accidents (“The smoke gets on the highways. You’ve got a safety consideration for highway accidents,” “They had a controlled burn …. The smoke blew across I-75 and they had this big tractor-trailer plow into another one”) and associated legal issues (“Problem of liabilities with the smoke,” “When the municipality does a burn, they’re liable if somebody gets in an automobile accident if they’re driving down the road and drive through smoke,” “If you are a private timber grower and you burn your timber and your fire results in traffic accidents, you are liable”). Another human health and safety issue is that heightened attention to prescribed burns may encourage children to play with fire (“kids … they’ll probably try to do it in their backyards,” “I’d be careful of any kind of campaign for making it a positive thing because of all the kids and people who might think burning’s good and just throw a match out or something,” “That’s going to be hard to do … promoting burning at the same time you’re telling kids not to play with matches … It’s going to have to be done very carefully”).

It was frequently noted that the concept of fire has a stigma shaped in part by negative images and reports in the mass media, particularly those associated with harms to wildlife (“I wonder how many of our impressions of fire were formed by Bambi with the fire going through the woods and killing all the little creatures,”

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“People have been absolutely brainwashed to believe that forest fires are evil,” that “fire is a horrible thing that kills animals,” and “essentially fire is bad … you put it out.” All groups mentioned the famous Smokey Bear campaigns that have convinced Americans of the dangers of fire since the 1940s (“We grew up with Smokey the Bear … fire is just something scary,” “Whoever’s trying to put this message out that controlled burns are necessary and trying to educate the public … is going to be trying to offset 40+ years of, ‘Only you can prevent forest fires’ and Smokey the Bear”). This deeply ingrained perception of fire as a risk to wildlife health and safety is likely to transfer to prescribed burns. That is, although most participants voiced an understanding and acceptance of prescribed burns, some issues regarding perceived dangers to wildlife emerged (“I’m concerned about a lot of the wildlife that if it burns up their habitat, they have to move out,” “There’s risk to endangered species,” “I have a problem with controlled burns with the nesting birds … they do not take that into consideration at all … they’re burning when birds are nesting and we already have a great shortage of songbirds”).

Also mentioned were feelings of confusion and alarm resulting from the belief that smoke from a prescribed burn was an actual wildfire (“I live near where they’ve been burning … we are hoping that’s what it is but you really don’t know,” “It scares you … you just panic”). Participants indicated that this was due in part to a lack of communication efforts to alert residents in advance (“There’s no way to notify people,” “A lot of times controlled burns were going on and I didn’t know about most of them … I had to call the fire department when one happened near my house just to make sure that it was a controlled burn”). However, they also recognized the complexity of the task (“How do you make sure you notify everybody on the street that you’re going to have them? If they’re out of the area, they don’t know and they come back and they see fire—you know, panic attack. So getting the word out is difficult”). Part of the problem in notifying residents was said to be the inability to predict when environmental conditions will be ideal to implement a burn (“There’s a real scheme about how you burn,” “The problem is sometimes scheduling them … You don’t know when they’re going to do it,” “You have a narrow window of opportunity weather-wise to get it done and that does not leave you a lot of time”).

Another issue voiced was that the smoke and ash from prescribed burns creates inconveniences (“nuisance”) for residents of affected communities. The inconveniences discussed ranged from road closings (“I think the biggest problem they had was road closings,” “They’ve had…many problems with having to close

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roads”); to ashes falling on cars, swimming pools, and outdoor laundry (“We did get fine ash on the automobiles,” “People say, ‘We don’t like ashes in the pools, we don’t like ashes on our cars,’ and ‘You can’t put clothes out on the line’”); to the unpleasant smell (“I’ve heard people say ‘I don’t want to smell that smoke with controlled burns’”); to being confined indoors (“I had asthma and I was locked in my house for two weeks. I had to cancel appointments etc., so it was personal inconvenience in that regard”).

When these groups were asked what they thought “other people” in the community knew about prescribed burning, their replies included, “Nothing,” “Zip,” “People who move here just don’t know,” and “There are tons of adults out there who really have no clue.” Overall, they felt that ambivalence and apathy toward the topic was predominant (“Most people don’t care,” “A lot of people just don’t care or want to know,” “I don’t think that many people are going to be concerned about it unless it’s impacting them directly,” “I would be surprised if people in general give controlled burns a second thought,” “You’ve got to convince people that wilderness areas are good and beneficial. That’s a tough one. I work with people everyday who won’t get off the sidewalk and wait for the next mall to open”).

Discussions also revealed weak self-efficacy (residents’ perceptions of whether they have the ability to achieve the goal) in minimizing the wildfire hazards that necessitate prescribed burning. Participants blamed others (developers, timber companies, local politicians) for creating a context of continuous wildfire hazards and felt that their own individual efforts would be constrained by broader social structures in the situation. Developers were criticized for building subdivisions next to wooded lands and suppressing natural fire in the area (“Residential areas out in the woods … where they’re isolated pockets with all these public lands around them or big ranches … they’re not controlling their fuel,” “As long as developers are allowed to build sporadically in different areas in the woods … I think they’ll always have this problem”). Timber companies located near community developments were thought to be potential dangers because of the product itself (trees), the production plan (density of planting), and their social irresponsibility (lack of fire breaks and prescribed burns) (“The pine plantations that they put out there were huge and probably with no fire breaks,” “They plant tons of trees real close together,” “The timber farmers don’t really manage the woods on a longterm view. They only think about this year’s crops,” “Timber companies … they are the culprits. They’re not going to let you burn up their timber”). Furthermore, some participants felt that it was unfair that private homeowners carry the risk,

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responsibility, and tolerance of prescribed burns while nearby timber farms were perceived as making no effort to improve the situation. Local politicians were criticized for poor planning and lack of leadership (“The local governments … did not take this possibility into account when they’re making their zoning decisions, their comprehensive planning decisions,” “Everything comes down to, ‘Well, this guy can sell out and make a lot of money, we gotta let him do it.’ The long-term consequences are not thought about and they are not funded,” “Your major cities … every politician that’s sitting in there of any power is controlled by the developers and by the tree farms … no one will take a stand,” “The only thing I can fault are the people who are in charge of the governments not to put it in the budget to have these things done before there are so many areas that they can’t control once it gets started”). Directions for Campaign Message Development Despite these issues, the majority of participants in this study supported the development of environmental campaigns to promote better understanding and acceptance of prescribed burning, and identified a number of directions for campaign messages. These directions, which are not mutually exclusive, include stress the prescribed burn safeguards, illustrate the ecological benefits of prescribed burns, inform and empower residents to cope during prescribed burns, emphasize the necessity of burns for wildfire prevention, focus on the economic benefits of prescribed burns, and encourage resident participation in public policy determination. The following section presents and discusses each emergent theme.

To help reduce residents’ fears of risks to human health and safety, it was recommended that campaign messages stress the prescribed burn safeguards. The training, expertise, and safety techniques of the individuals responsible for implementing prescribed burns should be communicated clearly (“Go through the safety route,” “Stress that they would be implemented, and monitored, and controlled as effectively as possible to help alleviate a lot of discomfort that people might have about it,” “The local fire department is going to be there … safeguards are in place … Everything is being done that can be done to safeguard people’s lives and property”). Furthermore, these groups believed that prescribed burning “Ought to be identified with people who are doing it professionally,” “Welltrained professionals,” who “Know what they’re doing,” are “able to handle anything that might go awry,” and that the message should include “Some caution,” such as “Fire is best left to professionals. Do not try this at home”. Visually demonstrating the entire step-by-step process of how a prescribed fire is implemented,

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presenting the characteristics and sizes of the land areas involved and explaining the prescribed conditions and safety precautions carefully were also suggested.

Another message direction is to illustrate the benefits of prescribed burns for wildlife and their habitats (“It’s part of nature,” “It’s a beneficial and natural thing. Helping Mother Nature do what’s right,” “The forest needs fire …. This is part of the evolution process of the forest,” “There are lots of plants and animals … that rely on fire,” “Plants and animals have evolved with fire”). Specifically, it was suggested that campaign messages reveal how prescribed burns mimic the important role of natural fires and how many species of wildlife escape unharmed (“They have some place to go,” “They will move, or they’ll go underground,” “Explain to people how the animals in the burn areas deal with fire so that they’re not visualizing all the birds dying”). Participants also believed that it is important that campaign messages show how natural landscapes regenerate after a prescribed burn and help support wildlife by providing an increased food supply. Demonstrating up close the rebirth of certain trees, plants, and wildflowers was encouraged (“Showing … a recently burned area that’s starting to grow back,” “Contrast … a piece of land … that has been a prescribed burn and one that has not,” “Show them starting a fire, and show after it’s done, and why they’re doing it, and show plants coming back, and birds moving back into the area, so they could sort of understand the whole picture … show little clips in time of how things progress”).

As findings revealed that residents can experience a fear-arousing belief that a prescribed burn is an actual wildfire, informing residents about prescribed burns and empowering them to cope when the burns are being implemented was another message recommendation (“If people know that it is coming and they know why, and how, and where, and as much as possible when, it does an awful lot to alleviate fear,” “Say there’s going to be a controlled burn next week, or tomorrow at this area expect some smoke, drive carefully,” “Give people tools with which to handle controlled burns … say here’s how you might be inconvenienced by a controlled burn, and here’s how to deal with it, and here’s how you’ll be notified, and here’s who to notify if it looks like it’s getting out of control”).

These groups believed that messages should emphasize the necessity of prescribed burns for the prevention of dangerous wildfires and create a sense of urgency. Many participants noted the lack of alternatives (“Your choices are

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controlled burns or uncontrolled burns … you don’t have any other choices. Frequent controlled burns or infrequent uncontrolled burns … we’re going to have fires. It’s a matter of are they going to be big ones, little ones, and how are you going to protect yourself …. You can’t stop the fires, but you can reduce the damage,” “One way or another they will burn—either under controlled conditions or under wildfire conditions,” “We have to do it. We don’t have a choice … emphasize the absolute necessity,” “Fire is an inevitable, natural phenomenon whether people like it or not”). Furthermore, it was suggested that campaign messages acknowledge residents’ concerns with the smoke- and ash-related inconveniences and then stress the importance of short-term tolerance and cooperation for long-term payoff (“It’s better to burn dead leaves than a new house,” “As long as it’s not burning my house down, I can clean the pool,” “It’s easier to accept the smoke and soot from a controlled burn than it is from watching your own house burn,” “Ashes on our house—it’s better to get it from a controlled burn than from a wildfire that burns our house down,” “Even though it might be an inconvenience for a day or two with the smoke … it might save your home later,” “You have to put up with some smoke and some ashes and stuff … the net result is going to be a lot better protection for everybody”).

Additionally, participants expressed that communication efforts could appeal directly to residents’ self-interest by focusing on financial benefits of prescribed burns for protecting home, personal property, and the local economy (“People relate to money,” “Relate it to their pocketbook,” “You can tie it in with the insurance,” “Tie it into losing your home or increased insurance rates or something like that,” “Tying in the money part. It’s going to affect the investment in your house. All the furniture you own … your taxes,” “It helps your home not burning,” “Have a person say, ‘If I had a controlled burn, my home would probably be here’ … someone who actually lived through it … you have the true emotions of it”).

Another recommended communication direction is to develop messages to encourage residents to participate in prescribed fire policy formation or revision. Discussions implied the need for improved leadership response and regulations of when, where, how, and under whose authority to conduct prescribed burns, and the importance of residents taking initiatives through voting (“You need to inform people to vote for the right higher ups,” “Just remember we have the votes if we just exercise them”). They also indicated that communicating prescribed burning concerns and solutions to government officials was important (“We’re all going to have to make sure that we follow up with our legislators and the county to make

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sure it gets funding,” “What you have to have are the legislators who are going to pay for this. Everybody can want it to happen but without any money to do it with, it’s not going to happen. So somebody should be getting to our legislators and saying, ‘What do you think and what responsibility are you going to take for doing something about it?”). DISCUSSION We believe that a marketing perspective can offer an additional approach to researching the multidisciplinary topic of prescribed burning and help inform communication campaign planning, especially regarding message content development. A series of focus groups were conducted to explore individual residents’ perspectives on prescribed burns and to provide directions for communications efforts. The results identify particular issues with prescribed burning and offered many concrete suggestions for the content of campaign messages. Some of our findings are consistent with previous related research on residents’ perceptions and beliefs. Like prior studies, we found that residents are generally supportive of prescribed burning but believe that there are issues that need addressing to improve the situation. In particular, the issue of human health and safety risks that emerged in the present investigation parallels results of studies by Cortner et al. (1984) and Winter and Fried (2000). Also consistent with Cortner et al.’s (1984) work is our finding of residents’ concerns with wildlife health and safety. Furthermore, the feeling of weak self-efficacy in minimizing wildfire hazards uncovered in the present study supports prior research results by Gardner et al. (1987) and Winter and Fried (2000). However, issues with prescribed burn-related smoke appeared to be a more prominent finding in our investigation than in previous work. Another consistency with the literature is our finding that residents believe that improved communication about prescribed burning is needed. Several of the campaign message directions proposed here parallel conclusions from other studies, including stressing the safety precautions implemented during prescribed burns (Carpenter et al., 1987; Winter & Fried, 2000), promoting the benefits of prescribed burning for wildlife and vegetation as well as correcting misperceptions that many animals are harmed in prescribed burns (Cortner et al., 1984; Jacobson et al., 2001; Manfredo et al. 1990), showing how residents can cope during prescribed burns (Carpenter et al. 1987), and communicating the importance of prescribed burning for preventing dangerous wildfires (Carpenter et al., 1987). Unlike this prior work, however, the present study focuses exclusively on message development, our approach offers a greater level of specificity for recommended message content and design, and the results are more readily applicable. The present investigation also contributes to the marketing literature by documenting a unique social marketing situation. The findings suggest that marketing the usefulness of fire is complex for at least four reasons. First, fire on any scale

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elicits strong emotions, and historical campaigns have successfully convinced the public that all fires are dangerous (according to the Advertising Council, 95% of adults and 77% of children recognize Smokey Bear and the slogan “Only you can prevent forest fires”; The Ad Council, 2001). Second, unlike commercial marketing, we are asking people to make sacrifices (tolerate inconveniences) rather than enjoy products. A third difficulty is associated with the need for group acceptance of the practice (e.g., see Shultz & Holbrook, 1999; Wiener, 1993). Because tolerance and acceptance of prescribed burning is “hidden” (i.e., not publicly observable), it may be especially difficult to motivate for prosocial reasons. Fourth, the benefits of prescribed burns are relatively long term and involve uncertainty, risk, and trust (e.g., see Shultz & Holbrook, 1999; Wiener, 1993). Our study’s findings have both practical and research implications. Practitioners of social marketing can use the results for planning improved message strategies for communication campaigns to inform residents on the importance of prescribed burns, how to cope, and why acceptance of the practice is beneficial. To be effective, marketing campaign messages must be relevant to the audience. Insights from our investigation may indeed help in the creation of compelling messages that connect with target audiences and are remembered. Furthermore, by gaining a clearer understanding about prescribed burn issues and situations from individual residents’ perspectives, federal, state, and local decision makers can plan and propose more acceptable and sustainable fire management policies. Like all studies, our study has methodological limitations. No doubt, prescribed burning is an important topic that needs further research and deserves investigation from multiple angles. Quantitative as well as qualitative approaches are recommended. Future avenues of inquiry deserving priority include developing and implementing a random sample survey stemming from the findings of the present study, using experimental methodology to test the communications effectiveness of the different message directions proposed here, examining various mass media and interpersonal channels for delivering prescribed burn messages, and tracking and comparing individual residents’ prescribed burn perspectives over time and across geographic regions. It is hoped that the present study generates further work on this important environmental topic, because we believe that a synthesis of all stakeholders’ perspectives is crucial for sustainable solutions to prescribed burn problems. REFERENCES Abt, R. C., Kuypers, M., & Whitson, J. B. (1991). Perception of fire danger and wildland/urban policies after wildfire. In S. C. Nodvin & T. A Waldrop (Eds.), Fire and the environment: Ecological and cultural perspectives (pp. 257–259). Asheville, NC: Southeastern Forest Experiment Station. Ad Council. (2001). (http://www.adcouncil.org/body-about.html), accessed September 10.

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Andreasen, A. R. (2002). Marketing social marketing in the social change marketplace. Journal of Public Policy & Marketing, 21(1), 3–13. Beebe, G. S., & Omi, P. N. (1993). Wildland burning: The perception of risk. Journal of Forestry, 91, 19–24. Berg, B. L. (2001). Qualitative research methods for the social sciences. Boston. Allyn & Bacon. Bright, A. D. (1995). Influencing public attitudes toward prescribed fire policies. In Environmental regulation & prescribed fire: Legal and social challenges (pp. 147–154). Tampa: Center for Professional Development, Florida State University. Bright, A. D., Fishbein, M., Manfredo, M. J., & Bath, A. (1993). Application of the theory of reasoned action to the national park service’s controlled burn policy. Journal of Leisure Research, 25(3), 263–281. Carpenter, E. H., Taylor, J. G., Cortner, H. J., Gardner, P. D., Zwolinski, M. J., & Daniel, T. C. (1987). Targeting audiences and content for forest fire information programs. Journal of Environmental Education, 17(3), 33–42. Cortner, H. J., Gardner, P. D., & Taylor, J. G. (1990). Fire hazards at the urban-wildland interface: What the public expects. Environmental Management, 14(1), 57–62. Cortner, H. J., Zwolinski, M. J., Carpenter, E. H., & Taylor, J. G. (1984). Public support for fire management policies. Journal of Forestry, 82(6), 359–361. Division of Forestry. (1993). The natural role of fire (Forestry Report R8-FR 15). Tallahassee, FL: Florida Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services. Edmunds, H. (1999). The focus group research handbook. Lincolnwood, IL: NTC Business Books. Frey, J. H., & Fontana, A. (1993). The group interview in social research. In D. L. Morgan (Ed.), Successful focus groups: Advancing the state of the art (pp. 20–34). Newbury Park, CA: Sage. Fried, J. S., Winter, G. J., & Gilless, J. K. (1999). Assessing the benefits of reducing fire risk in the wildland-urban interface: A contingent valuation approach. International Journal of Wildland Fire, 9(1), 9–20. Gardner, P. D., & Cortner, H. J. (1985). Public risk perceptions and policies toward wildland fire hazards in the urban/rural interface. In Fire management: The challenge of protection and use (pp. 153–172). Logan, UT: Utah State University. Gardner, P. D., Cortner, H. J., & Widaman, K. F. (1987). The risk perceptions and policy response toward wildland fire hazards by urban home-owners. Landscape and Urban Planning, 14, 163–172. Gardner, P. D., Cortner, H. J., Widaman, K. F., & Stenberg, K. J. (1985). Forest-user attitudes toward alternative fire management policies. Environmental Management, 9, 303–312. Glaser, B. G. (1992). Basics of grounded theory analysis. Mill Valley, CA: Sociology Press. Glaser, B. G., & Strauss, A. L. (1967). The discovery of grounded theory: Strategies for qualitative research. New York: Aldine de Gruyter. Glenn, M. (1999). Fire in the interface. Forum for Applied Research & Public Policy, 14(1), 26–30. Hermann, S. M., Van Hook, T., Flowers, R. W., Brennan, L. A., Glitzenstein, J. S., Streng, D. R., Walker, J. L., & Myers, R. L. (1998). Fire and biodiversity: Studies of vegetation and arthropods. In Transactions: Proceedings of the 63rd North American wildlife and natural resources conference (pp. 384–401). Washington, DC: Wildlife Management Institute. Hesseln, H. (2000). The economics of prescribed burning: A research review. Forest Science, 46(3), 322–334. Jacobson, S. K., Monroe, M. C., & Marynowski, S. (2001). Fire at the wildland interface: The influence of experience and mass media on public knowledge, attitudes, and behavioral intentions. Wildlife Society Bulletin, 29(3), 929–937.

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Kotler, P., & Zaltman, G. (1971). Social marketing: An approach to planned social change. Journal of Marketing, 35(3), 3–12. Malafarina, K., & Loken, B. (1993). Progress and limitations of social marketing: A review of empirical literature on the consumption of social ideas. Advances in Consumer Research, 20, 397–404. Manfredo, M. J., Fishbein, M., Haas, G. E., & Watson, A. E. (1990). Attitudes toward prescribed fire policies. Journal of Forestry, 88, 19–23. Martin, R. E. (1995). Prescribed fire as a social issue. In Environmental regulation & prescribed fire: Legal and social challenges (pp. 141–146). Tampa: Center for Professional Development, Florida State University. Merton, R. K., Fiske, M., & Kendall, P. L. (1990), The focused interview: A manual of problems and procedures. New York: Free Press. Miles, M. B., & Huberman, A. M. (1984). Qualitative data analysis: A sourcebook of new methods. Newbury Park, CA: Sage. Morgan, D. (1988). Focus groups as qualitative research. Newbury Park, CA: Sage. Morgan, D. L., & Krueger, R. A. (1993). When to use focus groups and why. In D. L. Morgan (Ed.), Successful focus groups: Advancing the state of the art (pp. 3–19). Newbury Park, CA: Sage. Myers, R. L., & Ewel, J. J. (1990). Ecosystems of Florida. Orlando: University of Central Florida Press. Pyne, S. J. (2001). The perils of prescribed fire: A reconsideration. Natural Resources Journal, 41, 1–8. Robbins, L. E., & Myers, R. L. (1992). Seasonal effects of prescribed burning in Florida: A review. In Miscellaneous Publication No. 8. Tallahassee, FL: Tall Timbers Research. Roy, R. (1999, January 3). Courage under fire. Orlando Sentinel, pp. G-1, G-4. Shultz, C., & Holbrook, M. B. (1999, Fall). Marketing and the tragedy of the commons: A synthesis, commentary, and analysis. Journal of Public Policy & Marketing, pp. 218–229. Stewart, D., & Shamdasani, P. N. (1990). Focus groups: Theory and practice. Newbury Park, CA: Sage. Strauss, A., & Corbin, J. (1990). Basics of qualitative research: Grounded theory procedures and techniques. Newbury Park, CA: Sage. Tangley, L. (2000, August). To burn or not to burn. U.S. News & World Report, p. 54. Taylor, J. G., & Daniel, T. C. (1984). Prescribed fire: Public education and perception. Journal of Forestry, 82(6), 361–365. U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Forest Service. (1989). A guide for prescribed fire in southern forests (Technical Publication R8-TP 11). Atlanta, GA: U.S. Department of Agriculture. Waldrop, T. A., White, D. L., & Jones, S. M. (1992). Fire regimes for pine-grassland communities in the southeastern United States. Forest Ecology and Management, 47, 195–210. Wiener, J. L. (1993). What makes people sacrifice their freedom for the good of their community? Journal of Public Policy & Marketing, 12(2), 244–245. Winter, G., & Fried, J. S. (2000). Homeowner perspectives on fire hazard, responsibility, and management strategies at the wildland-urban interface. Society & Natural Resources, 13(1), 33–50.

CHAPTER SIX

The Logic of Colonization in the “What Would Jesus Drive?” Anti-SUV Campaign

Judith Hendry Janet Cramer University of New Mexico

Portrayed in marketing ads as the way back to nature for rugged individualists, the sport utility vehicle (SUV) has become the icon of the “American image” of success and the spirit of adventure. Despite increasing criticism from environmentalists and other anti-SUV groups, the popularity of these vehicles continues to soar. Criticizing SUVs as gas-guzzling, air-polluting, Godzilla-like “instruments of death” (Easterbrook, 2003, p. 1), anti-SUV crusades have intensified. The primary concerns of environmentalists are related to emissions and fuel economy. The Clean Air Act of 1990, under which vehicle emissions are regulated, allows SUVs to emit 30% more carbon monoxide and hydrocarbons and 75% more nitrogen oxides than passenger cars (American Automobile Manufacturers Association, 1997). Furthermore, current corporate average fuel economy (CAFÉ) standards set fuel economy goals for new passenger cars at 27.5 miles per gallon (mpg), whereas SUVs, which are considered light trucks, are only required to achieve a standard of 20.7 mpg. Because this figure is the corporate standard for all light trucks, lower fuel economy for some models is allowable. For example, the Dodge Durango, the Ford Expedition, the Cadillac Escalade, the Lincoln Navigator, and the Land Rover Range Rover all average about 12 mpg in city driving.1 Almost one in every four vehicles sold is a sport utility vehicle.2 One of the reasons for the popularity of SUVs is their size. American drivers report being attracted to the 1

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Department of Energy have teamed up to create a web site that compares fuel economy of vehicles and scores each vehicle from 0 to 10 according to vehicle emissions (with 10 being a perfect score). Many of the most popular SUVs rate a 0 or 1 (retrieved January 8, 2003, from www.fueleconomy.gov; U.S. Department of Energy 2003). 2 The EPA reports that SUVs made up nearly 24% of the market in 2003. The light truck market—which includes SUVs, vans, and pickup trucks—now make up 48% of the light vehicle market (retrieved April 25, 2004, from www.epa.gov/otaq/cert/mpg/fetrends/s03004/pdf; U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 2004).

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sense of power, expanded carriage capacity, extended leg room, and to the sense of security and safety that the larger vehicles afford.3 Although some advertisements emphasize a resolution of the “man [sic]/environment relationship and position the owner as somehow in harmony with nature” (Olsen, 2002, p. 191), others see the vehicles as providing “protection from nature” through science and technology (Meister, 1997, p. 232). In short, proponents and opponents of the SUV invoke themes of nature and either its embrace or destruction. Other anti-SUV concerns center around U.S. dependence on foreign oil and escalating oil-related conflicts and terrorist activities. A series of provocative television commercials sponsored by the Detroit Project (an advocacy group cofounded by author and columnist Arianna Huffington) were aired in January 2003. The ads were a parody of earlier government campaigns linking drugs and terror and claiming that SUVs fund al Qaeda (Huffington, 2003). The anti-SUV crusade has recently intensified with religious overtones. The Evangelical Environmental Network (EEN) asked consumers to consider the question “What would Jesus drive?” when making vehicle-buying decisions. The EEN, an ecumenical coalition of church leaders, is part of a growing evolution among churches to expand the role of religion in the environmental movement.4 In addition to a series of TV ads, the main thrust of the campaign is carried out in Christian churches and communities of faith across the country. Campaign headquarters is a web site (www.whatwouldjesusdrive.org) where one can find everything from the discussion paper that presents the biblical rationale for the assumption that Jesus would drive an environment-friendly car (Sider & Ball, 2002) to pledge forms and bumper stickers. It would be difficult to assess the actual impact of the campaign or the meanings constructed by its receivers, because its organizers have not incorporated means to evaluate its success other than by keeping a running count of the number of pledge forms that have been submitted. As of February 17, 2004, a total of 934 people had pledged to, among other things, “choose the most fuel efficient and least polluting 3 Brian O’Neill in his testimony before the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation on February 26, 2003, reported that the sense of safety for SUV drivers is perhaps misleading. Death rates are similar for recent model cars and SUVs. However, deaths in SUVs are not occurring in the same kind of crashes. The risk of fatal single-vehicle rollover crash is about twice as high for SUV occupants as it is for car occupants. In addition, compared with cars, both SUVs and pickups have proportionately more car crash partner deaths than occupant deaths—the heavier the weight of the SUV or pickup, the higher the partner car occupant death rate (retrieved March 25, 2004, from www.highwaysafety.org/fed/testimony.htm; O’Neill, 2003). 4 In recent years, a number of denominations have begun to call for incorporating stronger pro-environmental language into Christian doctrines. The Evangelical Environmental Network’s “Declaration of the Care for Creation;” The U.S. Catholic Bishops’ statement, “Renewing the Earth;” and the Presbyterian statement, “Hope for a Global Future” are testimony to the expanding role of religion in the environmental movement. Jewish groups have also taken up the SUV issue by asking the question, “What would Moses drive?”

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vehicle available that truly fits [their] needs” (www.whatwouldjesusdrive.org/action/pledge/php; Evangelical Environmental Network, 2004).5 The number of pledges notwithstanding, if assessment of the campaign were to be evaluated by the amount of media exposure, then the campaign promoters could indeed claim success. The EEN reported that as of April 2003, over 1,900 stories have covered the campaign in newspapers including the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, and the Washington Post. The campaign has also received television coverage on 60 Minutes, the NBC Nightly News, and ABC’s World News Tonight. Feature articles have also appeared in Time, U.S. News and World Report, and Fortune magazine (www.whatwouldjesusdrive.org; Evangelical Environmental Network, 2002).6 Although the anti-SUV claims of the EEN have sound environmental justification, our purpose here is to examine the rhetoric of the “What Would Jesus Drive?” (WWJD) campaign in order to assess its ultimate pro-environmental potential. Our purpose is not to defend or condemn SUVs, but instead to consider this discourse as part of the larger problem of global environmental destruction and the need to restore harmony to the earth/human relationship. We argue that the WWJD campaign, when interpreted within the larger context of environmental discourse, reifies the human/nature split that underlies our current environmental crisis. An essential component of the environmental crisis is the worldview that humans and nature are separate and exist in a hierarchical relationship to each other. This “discontinuity between human and other-than-human,” as Berry (1999) observed, is the essential problem, because the “other-than-human is seen as ‘less than,’ as having no rights, and is thus vulnerable to exploitation” (pp. 4–5). This tendency toward exploitation is the consequence of the human/nature split (Blewett, 2000). 5

The pledge form states: “Confessing Jesus Christ to be my Savior and Lord, including Lord of my transportation choices, I pledge the following: • I will organize my life so that it is easier and more desirable to walk, bike, car pool, and use public transportation. • If I need to purchase a vehicle, I will choose the most fuel efficient and least polluting vehicle available that truly fits my needs. • I will discuss with others the moral concerns and solutions associated with transportation. • I will encourage automobile manufacturers to produce the most fuel-efficient and least polluting vehicles possible that truly fit the needs of the American people. • I will urge government leaders to support public transportation, a significant increase in fuel economy standards, and research and development for promising new transportation technologies that reduce pollution and increase fuel efficiency (retrieved March 3, 2004, from www.whatwouldjesusdrive.org; Evangelical Environmental Network, 2002). 6 A search of Nexus/Lexus General News Major Papers for the past 2 years using the search terms “what would Jesus drive” returned 266 hits. The same search across four regional news sources returned 460 hits. Athough this is an impressive number, it falls short of the 1,900 reported by the EEN. The EEN’s number most likely includes church newsletters and other such publications.

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Ecofeminists believe that the essence of this split parallels the domination of women by a patriarchal culture, connecting women with nature as the basis for the domination of both. Merchant (1980) addressed this connection by examining how the historical accounts of the domination of women closely parallel accounts of the domination of nature. Merchant discussed how, prior to the Enlightenment of the 16th and 17th centuries, nature was viewed as “organic” or as a living, nurturing mother, “a kindly, beneficent female who provided for the needs of mankind in an ordered, planned, universe” (p. 270). This nurturing mother image acted as a cultural restraint on how the natural world was seen, equating treatment of nature to treatment of one’s mother. The nature-as-nurturing-mother perspective changed with the scientific revolution and its technological advances. The constraints that inhibited the destruction of a living, nurturing organism were no longer in place when nature came to be viewed from the “mechanistic” perspective, in which nature is perceived as something that can be “bound into service” and “molded” (Merchant borrowed these words from Francis Bacon) by mechanical innovations. Extending this argument, Martin (1993) suggested that as humans moved from the hunter- gatherer mode of survival into mass agrarian and then industrial ages, we became more dependent on human ingenuity and skill to survive. What was a natural evolution, however, soon became a defensive posture and a separation that has “translated into defensive arrogance that has resulted in the destruction of our world” (p. 43). This defensive arrogance has been conceptualized as a form of colonization (Plumwood, 1993) in which humans and nature are not only split but also exist in a hierarchical relationship to each other. This hierarchy of human over nature has also been construed as a kind of religious manifest destiny. As David Abram (1996) wrote, human detachment from the natural world is linked to the Christian tradition: The “earliest European interpreters of indigenous lifeways were Christian missionaries who believed in the intelligence of humans and in the Biblical mandate that humans were the stewards of creation and that nature exists to serve humankind” (p. 8). Lynn White, Jr. (1973), in his controversial essay, “The Historical Roots of Our Ecological Crisis,” advanced the argument that Christianity, in promoting an anthropocentric worldview that portrays humans as separate and superior to nature, is largely responsible for the ecological crisis. Included in White’s indictment were science and technology, which, having developed within a Christian matrix, are “permeated with Christian arrogance toward nature” (p. 19). Similarly, Capra (1996) argued that Christian theology merged with Aristotelian philosophy to form the medieval worldview in which the universe was seen as an object for scientific and analytic observation. This worldview has persisted through the centuries to create a scientific and philosophical foundation in which mind (human) and matter (nature) are separate, and the human mind is capable of dissecting, analyzing, and thus harnessing the forces of nature. Consequently, ecologists such as Capra have argued for a new paradigm, a holistic worldview in

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which the world is seen “as an integrated whole rather than a dissociated collection of parts” (Capra, 1996, p. 6) and in which humans and the natural world are fundamentally interdependent, not locked into a dualistic, hierarchical relationship of knower and known. The common thread that all of these ecofeminist or ecotheological perspectives share is an indictment of the human/nature conceptual split that grounds the prevailing environmental discourse. What is called for is an alternative discourse that challenges the view of nature as a sharply separated inferior realm and critiques the oppressive conceptual framework that justifies and maintains a human/nature relationship of domination and subordination. Ecofeminism offers just such a critical challenge by allowing for an alternative, transformative discourse not grounded in the assumptions of the system it attempts to critique and transform. This chapter examines the rhetoric of the WWJD campaign through the ecofeminist lens of the logic of colonization (Plumwood, 1993) and offers a critical challenge to the prevailing discourse that serves to maintain and reinforce the domination of human over human and human over nature. RHETORICAL IDENTIFICATIONS AND FRAMES OF ACCEPTANCE IN THE WWJD CAMPAIGN The rhetorical identification with the WWJD anti-SUV campaign depends largely on the frame of acceptance through which the rhetorical audience views Jesus. In other words, when considering the question “What would Jesus drive?” within the context of this anti-SUV campaign, one must consider what manner of man Jesus was and how this influences the adoption of frames of acceptance to a Jesus-based rhetoric. What Manner of Man Was Jesus? For many years, historical scholars have attempted to answer this question. The historical accounts of Jesus are scant, incomplete, and often confounded by the symbolic narratives created by the early Christian movement. Nevertheless, the historical Jesus can be sketched based on the accounts of the gospels (the first four books of the New Testament) and from the work of Jesus scholars. Marcus Borg (1994), in his highly acclaimed and controversial book entitled Meeting Jesus Again for the First Time, presented a historical sketch of the secular Jesus. He was probably born shortly before 4 B.C. to Jewish parents named Mary and Joseph. He had four brothers and an unknown number of sisters. Jesus grew up in the hill country of southern Galilee, in a town called Nazareth. Jesus was probably a woodworker who made such things as doors, furniture, yokes, and ploughs and, as such, was part of the lower peasant class. He lived only into his early 30s and his public activity (that which is recorded in the gospels) was brief, lasting perhaps as little as a year by some accounts and as much as 3 or 4 years by others.

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Although the historical accounts of the secular Jesus are sketchy and incomplete, the characterization of the secular Jesus as a humble carpenter from Nazareth is widely held among Christian denominations. The nonsecular or divine image of Jesus, as constructed through New Testament narratives and the teachings of the Christian church, is more concisely defined and likewise consistent across numerous denominations. Borg (1994) suggested that there are two widespread images of the “divine Jesus.” The first is that of Jesus as “the savior.” This image portrays him as the divinely begotten Son of God whose mission was to die for the sins of the world. The primary quality of this image and its translation into the “Christian way of life,” theorized Borg, is the “belief imperative.” This “fideistic image of the Christian life” (p. 2) calls on Christians to believe certain things about Jesus—most centrally, belief in his divinity as the Son of God and the saving purpose of his death. The second common image of the divine Jesus is that of “Jesus the teacher.” This image portrays him as either the purveyor of general moral teachings subject to reinterpretation appropriate for the times and social conditions, or as the author of a “fairly narrow code of moral righteousness” (p. 2). The image of “Jesus the teacher” implies a “moral imperative”—that of being good and seeking to live by the moral codes taught by Jesus. The EEN discussion paper (Sider & Ball, 2002) reinforced Borg’s assumption of the two primary images of Jesus—Jesus as “savior” and Jesus as “teacher” and author of moral code. The discussion paper refers to Jesus by other titles commonly ascribed to in Christian doctrine that all fall under one of these two characterizations of the “divine Jesus.” In addition to “savior,” Jesus is referred to as “Creator,” “Lord,” “Great Physician,” and “Prince of Peace.” As explained in the discussion paper, the titles imply a moral imperative to care for his creation (Creator), obey his commandments (Lord), care for others (Great Physician), and love others (Prince of Peace). The Humorous (Secular) and Comedic (Divine) Frames of Acceptance The Christian consumer, when asked the question “What would Jesus drive?” will most likely call on one of two preconceived notions of Jesus: the “secular Jesus” (a carpenter from Nazareth) or the “divine Jesus” (Lord, Savior, Great Physician, and etc.). Rhetorical identification depends on which of these two frames of acceptance one adopts when responding to the question. Where the secular frame will trivialize, the divine frame will moralize vehicle buying decisions. Burke (1937) offered a useful tool for understanding the distinction between these two rhetorical identifications by way of distinguishing between the comedic/heroic and the humorous frames of acceptance. The comedic/heroic frame, according to Burke, is the opposite of the humorous frame. The comedic/heroic magnifies the hero’s character, making the hero “as great as the situation he confronts and fortifying the non-heroic individual vicariously, by identification with

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the hero” (p. 54). Conversely, humor, rather than raising the hero to meet the situation, dwarfs the situation “to meet the feebleness of those in the situation. It converts downward as the heroic [or comedic] converts upwards” (p. 54). Nonheroic, noncomedic characters take on “the attitude of ‘happy stupidity’ whereby the gravity of life simply fails to register. It’s importance is lost on them, rolls off like ‘water on a duck’s back’” (p. 54). The humorous response to the question “What would Jesus drive?” casts Jesus as the secular fool who, in his “happy stupidity,” ignores or minimizes the situation he confronts (in this case, the environmental consequences of vehicle choice). This humorous conversion downward is the overwhelming response of those responding to an online response forum, as evidenced by the following examples.7 Some referred to the pragmatic considerations of a secular Jesus: What would Jesus drive? A large, partially rusted and dinged up old pickup truck with bundles of boards strewn about and a tool box bolted to the bed—ask any carpenter. Sorry to say, but Jesus would have gotten about 15 mpg city. Look at the facts: (1) Jesus was a carpenter: full-size pickup. (2) Rugged geographical area: 4 ⫻ 4. (3) Had lots of friends: extended cab.

Others paradoxically used a biblical rationale for secularizing Jesus: I thought it was a Honda. Didn’t it say ‘Christ and his Disciples were in one Accord?’ He drove a rented [C]olt once. Psalms 83 proves that the Almighty clearly owns a Pontiac and a Geo. The passage urges you to pursue your enemies with your Tempest and terrify them with your Storm.

Another respondent appropriated popular cultural myth to answer the question: Since the bumper sticker says “God rides a Harley,” by simple logic it is clear that Jesus rides a Harley.

Other respondents skirted the issue entirely, focusing not on what Jesus would drive, but how he would drive: 7

These quotations are taken from the online response forum (retrieved January 8, 2003, from www.freerepublic.com/forum/a3b1b9d725772.htm; “Anti-SUV Query,” 2001).

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… A friend of mine got cut off in traffic by a car with a WWJD? bumper sticker. My friend promptly had his own stickers made up that said, “Jesus would have used his turn signal.” What ever vehicle it is, I know he drives the devil out of it.

These responses were obviously intended to be humorous and to construct a characterization of Jesus that would fall into the humorous rather than the comedic frame. One thing that all of these responses have in common is that none of them make reference to how Jesus might have viewed the environmental consequences of vehicle choice. None of them raise Jesus to the heroic, comedic level by suggesting that Jesus would recognize a moral imperative and meet the situation through his choice of the most environment-friendly vehicle. Jesus is removed from his divine pedestal by casting him as a “regular guy”—a carpenter who drives a pickup truck or a Honda. The momentousness of the ecological crisis is dwarfed by simply overlooking it entirely. Cast in the humorous frame, the environmental situation escapes Jesus’ consideration “like water off a duck’s back.” As Burke suggested, humor, as a frame of acceptance, does little to create identification with the rhetorical message, because the situation in which the rhetor is placed is misrepresented or overlooked. As such, viewed from the humorous frame of acceptance, the WWJD campaign offers little in the way of pro-environmental identification. The promoters of the campaign, the EEN, anticipated that the question “What would Jesus drive?” would elicit humorous responses, but contended that, humor aside, it “actually calls on Christians to ‘get serious’ about considering their transportation choices as moral ones” (Sider & Ball, 2002, p. 1). The EEN called on the divine characterization of Jesus to justify its claim that he would drive an environment-friendly vehicle. As Sider and Ball (2002) discussed in the EEN discussion paper, “Our answer to the question, ‘What would Jesus drive?,’ must be grounded in our central Christian beliefs that Jesus Christ is Creator, Savior, Lord, Great Physician, and Prince of Peace” (p. 2). They then went on to use Biblical references to support these divine characterizations of Jesus.8 As illustrated here, the humorous frame is most likely ineffective as a rhetorical strategy because it trivializes the campaign, its question, and thus its ultimate goal. 8

Examples of Biblical references used to support the EEN’s characterization of Jesus as Savior, Creator, Great Physician, and so on include the following: Creator: “For in Him, all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or authorities—all things were created through him and for him” (Colossians 1:16). Great Physician: “And he went about all Galilee teaching in their synagogues and preaching the gospel of the kingdom and healing every disease and every infirmity among the people” (Mathew 4:23). Savior: “For the Son of man also came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many” (Mark 10:45).

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The comedic frame of the divine Jesus, however, is more likely to have an impact. Moral language coupled with one’s deep, spiritual identification with the person of Jesus will potentially yield great influence in terms of one’s vehicle decisions. However, whether it will have a long-term pro-environmental impact is less clear. As we argue later in this chapter, using the comedic frame as one’s rhetorical identification is more likely to support a logic of colonization, the very logic that posits the human/nature split that is central to our current ecological crisis. ARTIFACT OF ANALYSIS The headquarters and literature distribution center for the WWJD campaign is accessed through their web site (www.whatwouldjesusdrive.org). This web site offers resources to help pastors and worship leaders in planning worship services, adult education, and special events centering on the WWJD theme. Available at the web site is the discussion paper authored by Sider and Ball (2002). This serves as the campaign’s manifesto wherein the Biblical rationale for the argument that transportation choice is a moral issue is established. The preaching, teaching, and worship resources, also available at the web site, are all based on this manifesto, creating doctrinal consistency across the campaign’s disseminated literature. The discussion paper serves as the artifact of analysis for the following ecofeminist critique. This discussion examines the religiously charged rhetoric of the campaign’s manifesto through the lens of the logic of colonization (Plumwood, 1993). Examining the logic of colonization implicit in the WWJD campaign invites critical reflection into the broader sphere of humans’ relationship to the natural world and how the practices and institutions that overdetermine our perceptions of the natural world are reinforced. THE LOGIC OF COLONIZATION Ecofeminist Val Plumwood (1993) offered a methodological tool for examining the overt and implied messages in the “What Would Jesus Drive?” campaign by means of value dualisms and the role these dualisms play in constructing and reinforcing the logic of colonization. As Plumwood wrote, “Feminist philosophy and ecological feminism have given a key role in their accounts of western philosophy to the concept of dualism, the construction of a devalued and sharply demarcated sphere of otherness” (p. 41). That is, the logic of colonization encompasses a dualistic framework by which the world is symbolically and conceptually separated into contrasting pairs (e.g., humans/nature, science/religion, rationality/spirituality). The “logic of colonization” is conceptually established by the construal of greater value or status on one component of the dualistic pair over the other, thus justifying or rationalizing the domination of the greater over the lesser, the superior over the inferior. The logic of colonization, according to Plumwood, underlies the environmental crisis and explains many problems inherent in

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Western culture’s treatment of nature. The liberatory strength of Plumwood’s method lies in identifying and problematizing “the dualistic contrasts opposing the sphere of nature to that of reason or the human” (p. 33). In so doing, this perspective challenges the dominant conception of the rational human as separate from and superior to nature. Plumwood outlined five features that are characteristic of dualisms that serve to facilitate the colonizing relationship of the dominator over the dominated, the superior over the inferior, the master over the slave: backgrounding (or denial), radical exclusion, incorporation (or relational definition), instrumentalism, and homogenization/stereotyping. Backgrounding refers to the process whereby the dominated is made inessential and obscured. Backgrounding is evident in the humorous frame of acceptance in which the environmental impacts of vehicle choice are completely overlooked. Because the humorous frame, as mentioned earlier, offers little in the way of pro-environmental identification, the focus of this analysis is on the comedic frame of acceptance. Because, in the comedic frame of acceptance, nature is not backgrounded (constructed) as inessential or denied, Plumwood’s notion of backgrounding as a method of colonization is not appropriate to this analysis. The discussion that follows, then, focuses on the comedic frame of acceptance and the rhetorical means of radical exclusion, incorporation, instrumentalism, and homogenization that comprise the characteristic features of colonization in the WWJD campaign. The human/nature relationship constructed and reinforced by the “What would Jesus drive?” campaign is a clearly defined hierarchical relationship in which Jesus or God, as creator of all nature, stands highest on the hierarchical ladder, humans occupy a lower rung, and nature is on the bottom. A considerable portion of the Discussion Paper focuses on establishing the divine characteristics of Jesus and his place at the top of the hierarchy by virtue of his divinity. As Sider and Ball (2002) explained, “Our answer to the question, ‘What Would Jesus Drive?’ must be grounded in our central beliefs that Jesus Christ is Creator, Savior, Lord, Great Physician, and Prince of Peace” (p. 2). Numerous Biblical passages are cited to support these divine characteristics of Jesus. When considering the question “What would Jesus drive?” from the perspective of the “divine Jesus,” the God/human/nature split is accentuated. The “divine Jesus,” elevated to a position of Savior, Great Physician, Lord, and so forth, occupies a rung of the hierarchy that is considerably higher than humans, with nature occupying a rung considerably lower than humans. Humans, as stewards of nature, are enjoined to consider the implications of vehicle choice and make the “morally correct” decision. It is important, however, to recognize the nature of the moral consideration that is established by this three-way hierarchical division. Unlike the moral consideration advocated by proponents of deep ecology, which calls for an ecocentric view of humans’ relationship to the natural world, the moral consideration called for by the WWJD campaign is firmly anthropocentric, with clearly defined directional harm: Harming nature harms people, which

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harms God. The WWJD Discussion Paper explained that pollution causes health problems to people, thereby violating the work of the Great Physician: “As pollution harms people by impacting their health, it works against the work of the Great Physician” (p. 4). Global warming creates hardships for people, which violates the Golden Rule and the Commandments and, in so doing, denies the Lordship of Jesus: “When we choose to cause pollution that hurts people, we violate the Golden Rule and the Great Commandments. Our contribution to pollution runs counter to Jesus’ Lordship in our lives” (p. 3). Harming people and maintaining our dependence on foreign oil frustrates the work of the Prince of Peace: “Pollution resulting in ill health and/or harm to the rest of creation is counter to Christ’s reconciliation of all things. Dependence on foreign oil from unstable regions heightens the potential for armed conflict. Both work against the Prince of Peace” (p. 4). The ultimate moral consideration, then, is for humans, because in harming humans we harm God. Unlike the perspective of deep ecology, humanity is not defined as part of nature, but instead as separate from it. Nature is left out of the moral equation, with moral consideration given only to humans and God. In addition to the human/nature dualism, the WWJD campaign constructs a human/human split in the form of the righteous versus the sinners, a conceptual dualism that is central to many Christian teachings and in no way unique to this rhetorical situation. What makes this division noteworthy is the specific criterion for separating the righteous from the sinners. As the Discussion Paper pointed out, “If we choose to cause pollution that hurts people, we contribute to the sin that Christ carried for us on the cross” (p. 3). Humans are in this manner given a choice to righteously obey or irreverently disobey, thus constructing a split between the “righteous” who make the morally correct decision not to pollute by buying environment-friendly vehicles, and the “sinners” who buy SUVs and other environment-unfriendly vehicles. The righteous/sinner dualism reinforces a logic of colonization through what Plumwood termed “radical exclusion” in which “maximum separation” is established between the master and the inferior. The motto associated with radical exclusion, explained Plumwood, is “I am nothing at all like this inferior other” (p. 49). The division is constructed as a separation that is as not merely a “difference of degree within a sphere of overall similarity, but a major difference in kind, even a bifurcation or division in reality between utterly different orders of things” (p. 50). The WWJD campaign establishes the maximum separation of radical exclusion by summoning the maximum authority. From this perspective, the sinner is not viewed as simply one who holds a different opinion about vehicle choice. When the Almighty is making the claim, there is little room for dissenting opinions. One is either righteous and follows the moral imperative established by God, or one is a sinner. Thus, the righteous are defined by the radical exclusion of the sinners. The radical exclusion of the other is further enhanced by the exclusive rhetorical audience for whom the WWJD campaign is targeted. This campaign is not “evangelical” in the sense that it attempts to proselytize others into the fold of

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Christianity. Rather, it is an internal campaign that preaches mainly to the “choir of Christians” and is targeted to Christian organizations and churches across the country. As such, the rhetorical audience for whom the campaign is primarily directed is limited to Christians who are members of these religious institutions. Another membership criterion must be met in order to qualify for the order of the righteous elite: Members must be at least moderately affluent so that they actually have a choice of whether or not to purchase a rather expensive vehicle. As such, the comparatively narrow campaign excludes a large number of people from the rhetorical audience by virtue of the fact that they lack the financial means to purchase an SUV. Radical exclusion is thus facilitated by the narrowly defined rhetorical audience that constructs a narrowly defined righteous elite and a very large, undefined order of the other. In addition to the narrowly defined rhetorical audience (well-to-do members of Christian organizations), the campaign is bounded by a narrowly confined rhetorical situation—the vehicle buying situation. The sole object of moral consideration is vehicle purchasing, and sinners are assigned to the underside of the dualism based on this judgment criterion. With vehicle purchasing emphasized as the primary definition of environmental activism, the campaign, in effect, suggests that society and the global situation is fundamentally OK, if only we could get those sinners to stop driving SUVs. This circumscribed rhetorical situation represents what Plumwood (1993) termed “incorporation” or “relational definition,” whereby “the underside of the dualistically conceived pair is defined in relation to the upper side as a lack, a negativity” (p. 52). The master’s qualities (in this case, Jesus and his followers of righteous vehicle buyers) are taken as the primary definition of social values such that “Obeying Jesus in our transportation choices is one of the great Christian obligations and opportunities of the twenty-first century” (Sider & Ball, 2002, p. 2). Conversely, the qualities of the colonized (the sinners who purchase SUVs) are defined in terms of the lack of the qualities of the master. The colonized individual is one who doesn’t follow the “Christian obligation” to buy an environment-friendly vehicle. Plumwood went on to explain that the qualities or activities of the colonized that do not fit into the colonizer’s scheme are ignored or denied, because “the master consciousness cannot tolerate unassimilated otherness” (p. 52). The narrowness of the rhetorical situation leaves a huge pool of unassimilated otherness consisting of a whole sphere of alternative views and environmental practices that are not acknowledged in the WWJD campaign. The narrowly defined rhetorical situation, through its failure to assimilate the consideration of alternative views and practices, implies that no other significant lifestyle changes are necessary. The environmental activist, thus reduced to a single act of purchasing in a single purchasing situation, deflects critique of the dominant consumer order and the capitalistic institutions that play such predominant roles in the perpetuation of our current environmental crisis. This critical deflection is a criticism of green consumerism in general, and is especially relevant to the WWJD

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campaign and its narrowly circumscribed construction of green consumerism. Delicath (1994) summarized the fundamental dilemma presented by green consumerism with regard to the larger context of environmental activism: In suggesting that no disruption of the consumer lifestyle is necessary, green consumer discourse makes unproblematic what are complex questions regarding the significance of the environmental crisis, the nature of their causes, and the formulation of adequate solutions. Green consumerism’s depiction of environmental problems glosses over a complex web of social, economic, and political factors related to the environmental impacts of consumption and suggests that larger changes are not necessary to respond adequately to environmental problems. (p. 19)

The scope of environmental activism, as incorporated into the narrowly defined rhetorical situation of the WWJD campaign, suggests that in order to solve our environmental problems, we must buy something. Thus, the campaign, rather than challenging the dominant consumer order, reaffirms it. Another characteristic feature of colonization is what Plumwood referred to as “instrumentalism.” Nature is conceived as an instrument to human ends and it is “made part of a network of purposes which are defined in terms of or harnessed to the master’s purposes and needs” (p. 53). From the instrumental perspective, nature is viewed as terra nullius, or without ends of its own that require consideration. As such, nature is available without restraint to meet human needs. The instrumental positioning of the WWJD campaign is clearly established by the moral exemption stated in the EEN’s Discussion Paper: “SUVs should only be purchased by those who truly need them, such as individuals in rural areas and those genuinely needing 4-wheel drive” (Sider & Ball, 2002, p. 11). The instrumental implication for the human/nature relationship is clear: It’s OK for humans to harm nature through the use of SUVs if their need is great enough. SUVs are not universally prohibited. However, the specific criteria for determining who receives exempt status—who is “rural” enough or “needs 4-wheel drive” enough—are not clearly defined. As such, one could easily justify the purchase of an SUV as necessary for excursions into the wilderness or to the ski resort. The morally sanctioned instrumental uses of SUVs are broadly and vaguely defined, allowing for multiple interpretations of this exemption. With very little creative rationalization, a Christian consumer could drive an SUV with a free conscience and, in so doing, operate firmly and comfortably within the system the campaign purports to critique. A final characteristic feature of colonized relationships is homogenization or stereotyping. This is the disregard for or denial of diversity within the undifferentiated colonized. As Plumwood (1993) explained, “To the master, residing at what he takes to be the center, differences among those of lesser status at the periphery are of little interest and importance and might undermine comfortable stereotypes of superiority” (p. 54). The “comfortable stereotype of superiority” generated by the rhetoric of the WWJD campaign is that of the well-to-do Christians, in a

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vehicle-buying situation, who make the moral vehicle-buying choice not to purchase an SUV, unless they need it enough. All others are categorically cast into the homogenous sea of sinners, giving almighty sanction to what many already see as a road war between cars and SUVs. Easterbrook (2003) discussed the “existential fiasco” of the SUV: “Driving in America has long been leaned on as a metaphor for various aspects of the national psyche. Now, thanks to SUVs and light pickups, driving is a metaphor for anxiety-inducing unpleasantness, petty aggression against neighbors, and profanity-shouting and finger-flipping during routine daily events” (p. 2). Mencimer (2002) demonstrated how anti-SUV sentiments can translate into negative stereotyping of SUV drivers. “Have your ever wondered,” asked Mencimer, “why sports utility vehicle drivers seem like such assholes? … Unlike any other vehicle before it, the SUV is the car of choice for the nation’s most self-centered people; and the bigger the SUV, the more of a jerk its driver is likely to be” (p. 1). Market research conducted by the nation’s leading automakers and reported by Bradsher (2002) would tend to support Mencimer’s unflattering characterization. According to market research, SUV buyers tend to be insecure and vain. They are frequently nervous about their marriages and uncomfortable about parenthood. They often lack confidence in their driving skills. Above all, they are apt to be self-centered and self- absorbed, with little interest in their neighbors and communities (Bradsher, 2002, p. 101). Although a negative stereotype may appear to be justified through market research, the problem with this stereotype, as with all stereotypes, is that it oversimplifies, overgeneralizes, and denies the diversity within the undifferentiated masses of SUV drivers. Even the most outspoken anti-SUV activists recognize the fact that many “congenial and kindhearted people own these monstrosities” (Easterbrook, 2003, p. 2). Yet, unless one is personally familiar with the life circumstances of the SUV driver in question, one tends to make judgments based on preexisting stereotypes, thus potentially placing underserved judgment on individuals in the “anonymous collectivity” of sinners. But perhaps an even more important consequence of negative stereotyping is that by casting blame on the individual consumer, attention is diverted from the real culprits. It draws attention away from the government’s failure to adequately regulate SUVs and from the industry’s aggressive and often misleading marketing of environmentally irresponsible vehicles. Placing the blame solely or predominantly on consumers fails to account for the fact that consumers are, to a large extent, “shaped and constrained by decisions made in corporate board rooms, well beyond the reach of public scrutiny” (Tokar, 1997, p. XIV). CONCLUSION Through radical exclusion, incorporation, instrumentalism, and homogenization, the WWJD campaign reinforces the logic of colonization, perpetuating the

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exclusion and control of nature as well as other humans who are also construed as inferior. Nature and the colonized other, defined as the sharply separated inferior realm, are thus made available for domination and for advancing the purposes and social values of the superior realm. One of the social values reinforced by this campaign is that of the existing consumer order. Although this campaign may, at face value, appear to challenge consumerism, it is firmly immersed within, not separated from, a culture of consumerism. This campaign represents a resistance to a particular consumer product while remaining firmly fixed within, and noncritical of the culture it is opposing. As such, this campaign does little to challenge the dominant consumer order. As Barker (2002) suggested, “Resistance, having only very localized targets, is frequently unsuccessful at bringing about change other than that of generating a new icon for consumer sales” (p. 172). In this case, the “new icon” for consumer sales is a more environment-friendly vehicle. This does not represent an alternative transformative discourse; instead, it merely demonstrates a discourse of “life as usual with different wheels.” This is not to suggest that the WWJD campaign does not offer the potential for stimulating pro-environmental action. Appeals that call on identification with the divine Jesus operate within the belief system of the intended audience and could potentially yield great influence with regard to vehicle-purchasing decisions. If even a small percentage of the campaign’s Christian audience is inspired to purchase more fuel-efficient, cleaner burning vehicles, a forward step has been made toward environmental protection. Perhaps an even more significant impact is in the campaign’s potential for exerting social and political pressure toward reform of CAFÉ and vehicle emission standards. Nevertheless, although the WWJD campaign may serve to inhibit some people from purchasing SUVs and, in so doing, have a negligible but positive impact on the environment, any potential environmental gain that may be realized through the campaign is overshadowed by its disregard for and potential to delegitimate true liberatory or deep ecological rhetoric. When interpreted within the larger context of environmental activism, the WWJD campaign serves to reify and sanctify the human/nature split and the logic of colonization in which the current environmental crisis is grounded, and to insulate the existing powers from critique. In conclusion, the rhetoric in the “What Would Jesus Drive?” campaign reinforces the value dualisms that support the logic of colonization. As Plumwood cautioned, however, the remedy to this logic is not to erase the dualisms, as if simple incorporation could change the identities that are formed in power relations. Rather, nonhierarchical relationships should be sought in which we acknowledge our interdependence, both with nature and with each other. This may involve recognizing our separation from an “other,” not in a hierarchical mode of judgment but in an attitude of respect, even reverence, for the independent values and needs of all entities that are necessary to the whole. Others speak of this as interdependence—the mutual dependence of all life processes on one another. “A sustainable

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human community,” Capra wrote, “is aware of the multiple relationships among its members. Nourishing the community means nourishing those relationships” (1996, p. 298). Thomas Berry urged a reconceptualization of what it means to be human on the planet so that we move the human presence from one of “devastating exploitation to a benign presence” (1999, p. 7). This is not an easy task. It requires redefining humans’ relationship to the natural world and the rhetorical strategies that serve to construct that relationship. It also requires not accepting the rhetorics of unexamined campaigns, even though, at face value, they may appear to reflect our environmental values and moral sensibilities. The ecofeminist perspective of the logic of colonization offers one such means of critically challenging these rhetorics and the prevailing discourse that ground our current environmental crisis. REFERENCES Abram, D. (1996). The spell of the sensuous: Perception and language in a more-than- human world. New York: Vintage. American Automobile Manufacturers Association. (1997). Motor vehicle facts and figures, 1997. Washington, DC: Author. Anti-SUV query: “What would Jesus drive?” (2001, June 4). FreeRepublic.com. Retrieved January 8, 2003, from www.freerepublic.com/forum/a3b1b9d725772.htm Barker, C. (2002). Making sense of cultural studies: Central problems and critical debates. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. Berry, T. (1999). The great work: Our way into the future. New York: Bell Tower. Blewett, J. (2000). Community at the heart of the universe. The Ecozoic Reader, 1(1), 41–43. Retrieved, April 1, 2004, from www.ecozoicstudies.org/ER-1-1.pdf Borg, M. J. (1994). Meeting Jesus again for the first time. New York: Harper Collins. Bradsher, K. (2002). High and mighty: The world’s most dangerous vehicles and how they got that way. New York: Public Affairs. Burke, K. (1937). Attitudes toward history. New York: New Republic. Capra, F. (1996). The web of life: A new scientific understanding of living systems. New York: Anchor. Delicath, J. W. (1994). The rhetoric of green consumerism: A social ecological critique. Speaker and Gavel, 31, 2–26. Easterbrook, G. (2003, January 20). America’s twisted love affair with sociopathic cars: Axle of evil. New York Republic Online. Retrieved January 15, 2003, from http:// www.tnr.com/doc.mhtml?i=20030120&s=easterbrook012003 Evangelical Environmental Network. (2002). The what would Jesus drive? An EEN campaign. Retrieved March 3, 2004, from www.whatwouldjesusdrive.org Huffington, A. (2003). Take action: Tell Detroit their gass-guzzlers help terrorists buy guns. Retrieved January 15, 2003, from www.ariannaonline.com/suv/ Martin, D. (1993). The joining of human, earth, and spirit. In F. Hull (Ed.), Earth spirit: The spiritual dimension of the environmental crisis (pp. 43–57). New York: Continuum. Meister, M. (1997). “Sustainable development” in visual imagery: Rhetorical functions in the Jeep Cherokee. Communication Quarterly, 45, 223–234. Mencimer, S. (2002, December). Bumper mentality. Washington Monthly (online). Retrieved March 10, 2004, from www.washingtonmonthly.com/features/2001/ 0212.mencimer.html

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Merchant, C. (1980). The death of nature. New York: Harper & Row. Olsen, R. K., Jr. (2002). Living above it all: The liminal fantasy of sports utility vehicle advertisements. In M. Meister & P. M. Japp (Eds.), Enviropop: Studies in environmental rhetoric and popular culture (pp. 175–196). Westport, CT: Praeger. O’Neill, B. (2003). Some aspects of the relative safety of cars and SUVs. Statement before the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, February 26, 2003. Retrieved March 25, 2004, from www.highwaysafety.org/fed/testimony.htm Plumwood, V. (1993). Feminism and the mastery of nature. New York: Routledge. Sider, R., & Ball, J. (2002). “What would Jesus drive?”: A campaign discussion paper. Retrieved December 20, 2002, from www.whatwouldjesusdrive.org Tokar, B. (1997). Earth for sale: Reclaiming ecology in the age of corporate greenwash. Boston: South End Press. U.S. Department of Energy. (2003). Fuel economy. Retrieved January 8, 2003, from www.fueleconomy.gov U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. (2004). Transportation and air quality. Retrieved April 25, 2004, from www.epa.gov/otaq White, L., Jr. (1973). The historical roots of our ecological crisis. In I. G. Barbour (Ed.), Western man and environmental ethics (pp. 18–30). Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley.

CHAPTER SEVEN

David Defeats Goliath on the Banks of the Delaware: Rhetorical Legitimacy and the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area Debate

Bruce J. Weaver Albion College

Two extraordinary events in American environmental history occurred in 1965. The more famous of these two events was the establishment by Congress of the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area (DWGNRA), which was originally to be part of the Tocks Island Dam and Reservoir Project. This event is significant, surely, in one sense for what was set aside and preserved for future generations: a huge national recreation area, including 72,000 acres of scenic hardwood forests, historic buildings and villages (some dating back to the American Revolution), a beautiful mountain lake named Sunfish Pond, and, most important, a large free-flowing river within a few hours drive of the major metropolitan areas of the East. The Delaware River flows without a dam from New York State to its end in the Delaware Bay. Forty of its most undeveloped and scenic miles are included in the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area, whereas the remaining miles north of the DWGNRA are protected as a national scenic and recreational river. Certainly every visit made to the Delaware Water Gap increases one’s appreciation of what has been saved on the boundary between Pennsylvania and New Jersey. However, the wonderful river and forested hills included in the current Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area constitute only half the picture. Things that are missing from the Recreation Area are as important a part of the story of this place as are the natural and manmade attractions still left for people to enjoy. A massive dam and a 37-mile-long lake with water depths up to 140 feet are missing; hundreds of thousands of visitors and the accompanying development needed to handle huge crowds of tourists are missing; the Pumped Storage Project, a major electrical generating facility, designed to top the highest mountain in the area, is missing; and miles 133

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of new roads and highways, although not completely missing, are only a tiny fraction of what had been proposed to accompany the gigantic project, originally named the Tocks Island Dam and National Recreation Area.1 Despite its size and impact, there were many things one could admire about the original Tocks Island Dam Project, the reservoir plan, and the other subordinate projects. The whole project was comprehensive and even somewhat innovative. It addressed growing water-consumption problems; it provided some flood control; it helped fulfill increased energy needs; and most important for the public, it provided large-scale and easily accessible recreation facilities for millions of people. However, despite extensive government backing and widespread public support through much of the 1960s, the dam was never built, and many of the original grand schemes were eliminated or cut back. Within weeks of groundbreaking, a combination of forces came together to stop a project that clearly was seen as a fait accompli. This astonishing reversal leads to the identification of the second extraordinary event that took place in 1965, which was certainly a direct result of Congress’s approval of the Tocks Island Project. In 1965, a small group of local Pennsylvania residents concerned about the environmental and social impact of the massive project proposed by the federal government formed the Delaware Valley Conservation Association. The DVCA was headed by Nancy Shukaitis, a resident of the Minisink Valley, the area that was to be flooded by the reservoir. Shukaitis, whose family had lived in the Minisink Valley since the 18th century, announced opposition to the project, which up to this point had been enthusiastically embraced by most constituencies, including the tourist industry, labor groups, local governments, builders, economic development organizations, and most state officials. At the hearing on March 1, 1965, held by the Subcommittee on National Parks and Recreation, Shukaitis verbalized the first genuine attack against the project. In her speech, she established the primary arguments that would eventually provide a 1 It is difficult for a visitor to the DWGNRA today to envision the massive nature of the original Tocks Island Project. The dam was only one part in a group of 19 federal and state dams, eight of which were authorized by Congress in 1962. Aside from the dam, the project included a vast network of national, state, and local parks that would surround most of the planned lakes and reservoirs. Tocks Island Dam was the centerpiece of this grand undertaking. The dam project was to be the Army Corps of Engineers’ eighth-largest project and its greatest dam construction east of the Mississippi. Behind the dam would be almost 300 billion gallons of water contained in a huge lake that would add 600 million gallons of water to the flow of the Delaware and would produce greater amounts of hydropower than had anything previously built in the basin. Encompassing the reservoir was to be the huge park that was the first national recreation area in the East. The National Park Service predicted that the national recreation area surrounding Tocks Island Reservoir would quickly become the busiest unit in the National Parks system. Over 10 million visitors a year were predicted: “On a summer’s weekend, more people would have been in the planned national recreation area than most park units see in a year” (Albert, 1991, p. 5). To achieve such a project, the government put into effect one of the largest land acquisition processes ever undertaken. Entire communities and villages would be eliminated through the program. The acreage needed for the lake and the park was mostly in private hands in 7,344 separate parcels in 22 municipalities and three different states (Albert, 1991, p. 5).

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rationale for opposing the Tocks Dam. In 1965, however, these arguments represented the views of only a handful of local residents. By the early 1970s, regional opposition to Tocks Dam exploded as membership in the Delaware Valley Conservation Society reached over a thousand. Simultaneously, the Tocks Dam received more negative national media coverage as the Save the Delaware Coalition, a loose organization of approximately 85 environmental groups—including the Sierra Club and the Wilderness Society—used the media and their persuasive influence to make the Tocks Dam Project a negative cause celebre. Richard C. Albert’s excellent study Damming the Delaware: The Rise and Fall of Tocks Island Dam (1987) outlines in detail the complex process that concluded in 1975 with the states involved in the project (Delaware, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania) and representatives of the federal government voting down the Tocks Dam Proposal while retaining the National Recreation Area with a free-flowing river as its centerpiece. Albert’s study is well documented and highly informative; however, it addresses only as a secondary concern the role that communication played in bringing about the phenomenal change from apparent universal acceptance of the dam to eventual widespread condemnation. It was clear from the very beginning of vocalized opposition to the dam that disagreement with the project did exist. Shukaitis and other members of the Delaware Valley Conservation Association hit a responsive chord in people who felt disenfranchised by the process and disowned by the relocation program. Few property owners in the area, for instance, were eager to give up their homes and communities so that city folks could have a tax-paid vacation spot relatively close by or another subsidized source of water for their homes and industries. Consequently, membership in DVCA and participation in its activities increased almost immediately after Shukaitis announced that the project would not go forward without opposition. The interesting communication question that arises from an investigation of the successful campaign to stop the damming of the Delaware River at Tocks Island is: How did a small group of people who clearly were outside the power structure damage the legitimacy of long- established institutions such as the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the National Park Service while they simultaneously developed enough legitimacy for themselves to become major players in a decision concerning a nationally significant environmental project? This chapter begins to answer this complex communication question by investigating the printed materials and speeches produced by the two most important grass-roots groups, the Delaware Valley Conservation Association and the Lenni Lenape League, as well as those arguments presented by established sources such as the National Park Service and the Army Corps of Engineers. CHANGING VIEWS OF THE ENVIRONMENT AND DAMS By the mid-1960s, views concerning environmental issues were changing, and a number of these changes assisted our small band of anti-dam activists to gain a level of legitimacy probably unattainable even 10 years earlier. By the time the

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anti-Tockers mounted a persuasive campaign, they could rely on social sensibilities having gained some acceptability from the civil rights movement and the opposition to American involvement in Vietnam. These new sensibilities legitimated citizens’ increased inclinations to question powerful institutions and, to some degree, they also legitimated rights to demonstrate and protest for principles reflecting personal viewpoints rather than those representing traditional institutional or national needs. As the 1960s continued, distrust of government and massive government projects was exaggerated somewhat by a youth-oriented subculture in which experimentation in lifestyles and questioning of authority become increasingly acceptable and often the focus of media attention. All of these broader social changes allowed the anti-Tocks arguers to sound more mainstream and legitimate, whereas these same social developments caused increasing problems for government and institutional arguers as they sustained the status quo for worn-out reasons. Many of the broader social changes occurring during this period were reflected directly in environmental debates, and were especially relevant to changing views of dams and their role in American life. In the beginning of the 20th century, the value of dam construction came into question in the debate over Hetch Hetchy in which John Muir, a wilderness preservationist, argued that constructing a dam in a remote valley in Yosemite National Park was an expression of human arrogance and a violation of the national parks idea, whereas Gifford Pinchot, director of the national forests, argued that San Francisco’s need for water was paramount, and that the value of the valley would actually be increased with a dam and a reservoir. Christine Oravec, in “Conservationism vs. Preservationism: The ‘Public Interest’ in the Hetch Hetchy Controversy” (1984), discussed how the Hetch Hetchy controversy: reflected two differing views of the “public interest,” one of which eventually predominated over the other. Conservationists, endorsing the utilitarian principle of “the greatest good for the greatest number,” argued that the material needs of numbers of identifiable individuals represented “the public interest,” hence their support for the dam. Preservationists, on the other hand, argued that to save the beauty of the valley served a more generally defined “national” interest. (p. 444)

The conservationist view that triumphed at Hetch Hetchy remained basically unchallenged until the 1950s. Dams meant progress, and institutions such as the Bureau of Reclamation and the Army Corps of Engineers—who epitomized this progress in the public’s mind—were almost universally trusted and encouraged to develop an enormous number of civic projects, including a vast system of dams. The most famous and impressive of these dams was Hoover Dam, dedicated in 1935. This largest dam in the world quickly became the symbol of the New Deal and a source of national pride during the Depression. This masterwork of engineering and design was referred to as “the Great Pyramid of the American Desert,” and “the Ninth Symphony of our day” (cited in Farmer, 1999, p. 133).

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With its prestige soaring immediately after the Hoover Dam dedication, the Bureau of Reclamation built Parker Dam, the Colorado River Aqueduct (for Los Angeles), Imperial Dam, and the All-American Canal (for the Imperial Valley). Following World War II, the building continued and the number of proposals increased. However, in the 1950s, the Bureau of Reclamation designed a pair of dams as part of the Colorado River Storage Project that were to be built within the boundaries of Dinosaur National Monument, a rarely visited 211,000-acre preserve straddling the Utah–Colorado border. Unable to accept another dam like Hetch Hetchy that violated the sanctity of a national park, a coalition of opposition groups formed to lobby Congress and fight the dam by relying on a precedence argument. They asked, “If the Bureau puts up dams in Dinosaur, what would stop it from damming other parks and monuments, even the Grand Canyon?” (Farmer, 1990, p. 138) Anti-dam advocates summarized their arguments against Echo Park Dam in a 1955 coffee-table book entitled This Is Dinosaur: Echo Park Country and Its Magic Rivers (1955), published by David Brower of the Sierra Club. Through this attractive book, Brower hoped to make the value of Dinosaur obvious to the pubic and avoid another situation like Hetch Hetchy, in which most people had little knowledge of the proposed dam site and thus did not feel any compelling need to guarantee its preservation. In addition to validating the importance of Dinosaur as a scenic wonder, anti-dam advocates challenged the Bureau of Reclamation’s scientific data, especially their calculations of water evaporation. Environmental scientists located a major miscalculation of the impact of heat on evaporation used by the Bureau to justify dam construction, and they revealed this significant mistake to the media. Environmentalists exploited this discovery and argued that it brought into question the validity of much of the Bureau’s data. Historian Mark Harvey (1994) argues that conservationists could now boast they had met Bureau engineers on their own ground and won a mathematical argument (pp. 181–205). Much to the surprise of most people involved with the dispute, the Echo Park dam project was halted. The environmental coalition had helped to save Dinosaur, reinforced the national park idea, and strengthened its own movement. As Jared Farmer (1994) noted, “After standing for decades on the margins of American politics, conservationists could finally claim a significant national victory” (p. 144). However, there was a price to be paid for this victory, the loss of Glen Canyon in Arizona. So eager were most environmentalists to win in Dinosaur National Monument that in 1955 the Council of Conservationists agreed to support the government if plans were dropped for Dinosaur. Likewise, Rainbow Bridge National Monument was protected from the waters of Lake Powell. Immediately after making this pact, however, environmentalists began to regret their decision as they realized the magnitude of what they had surrendered. Elliot Porter and David Brower published The Place No One Knew: Glen Canyon on the Colorado River in 1963. This renowned publication was another coffee-table book that became the most influential work ever published on the canyon. This poignant book served as beautiful but tragic reminder of what happens when

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citizens compromise their principles and make deals with an unscrupulous opponent. For environmentalists and the environmental movement, Glen Canyon Dam became a major turning point. As Edward Abbey stated, “Surely no man-made structure in modern American history has been hated so much, by so many, for so long, with such good reason” (cited in Farmer, 1999, p. XIII). Much of the guilt and animosity generated by the flooding of Glen Canyon gained public attention when the Bureau of Reclamation proposed to dam areas of Grand Canyon National Park. Probably, if the Bureau planned to dam another nonfamiliar, nondesignated beauty spot like Glen Canyon, they would not have meet with enough organized dissent to stop them. However, when the government proposed to flood the Grand Canyon, it targeted not just a geographic space but a mythic space as well. In American consciousness, the idea of the Grand Canyon was as great as the place itself. In 1966, as a response to this threat to a national icon, David Brower authorized full-page ads to appear in the New York Times, the Washington Post, and the Los Angeles Times stating, “Now only you can save the Grand Canyon from being flooded for profit.” Brower also helped to develop another full-page ad, which asked, “Should we also flood the Sistine Chapel so tourists can get nearer the ceiling?” (Farmer, 1999, p. 152) In the months that followed these ads, the public bombarded Congress with hundreds of thousands of letters opposing the Bureau’s recommendation. This was the Grand Canyon, after all, and this was the 1960s, the decade when environmentalism began to reach beyond a tiny group of nature enthusiasts. It was also the decade when people began to question the universal acceptability of progress and the projects that traditionally were sold to the public as necessary for progress to be attained. It was additionally the decade in which people were no longer reluctant to oppose government actions and agencies. In The Green Revolution, Kirkpatrick Sale (1993) argued that the 1960s established the roots of the environmental movement based on “a new style of citizen activism”: The failures of mid-century society were increasingly underscored, and the consensus of the uncritical Eisenhower years fell apart. Whatever the nature of the failures—the foolhardy war in Vietnam, violence in the cities, assassinations and riots, a permanent “other America,” devaluation and inflation—they showed that many of the hallowed systems of the land were in disarray. For many in the environmental movement, this meant an increased awareness of government as an environmental culprit—from malfeasance on the federal level to misfeasance on the state and nonfeasance on the local levels—and as a handmaiden of private business interests degrading the environment for private gain. Looked at closely, most of the agencies of the state—the Nuclear Regulatory and Federal Power commissions, the Army Corps of Engineers, the Agriculture and Interior departments—seemed driven more by economics than by ecology. (pp. 12–13)

It is within this changing social, political, and environmental scene that the conflict over the Tocks Island Dam developed. Turbulence resulting from a wide spectrum of social issues and increasing environmental victories encouraged

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grass-root organizations such as the Delaware Valley Conservation Association to confront traditional institutions. In these confrontations, they argued that people who have lived intimately with the contested land for centuries have a greater claim to legitimacy than do institutions that propose from afar massive changes to the land in the name of national pride and benefits. LET’S DAM THE RIVER The fact that no dam existed on the Delaware River in 1965 is incredible considering almost continuous schemes to control its water since colonial times. (For an excellent short review of the history of the area and the Tocks Project, see Albert, 1991.) The Delaware River has always been looked on as a resource, initially as a means of transportation, then as a site for electric power generation and as a water supply for the cities of Philadelphia, Trenton, and eventually New York, and finally as a prime recreational location.2 2 As early as 1783, Pennsylvania and New Jersey formed a committee to examine the joint use of the Delaware River. By this time, the Delaware was being used by boats transporting various products. The bi-state committee realized the possibility of traffic disruptions, and thus the two states passed an anti-dam treaty for the Delaware. This treaty was still in place when the first dams were initiated in the 1890s and when some hydropower proposals were made a short time later. In the early part of the 20th century, interest in using the Delaware shifted to water supply, and by 1920, many groups were studying how to develop water-holding facilities on the upper Delaware. Due to increased interest, in 1923, three states formed a temporary alliance called the Tri-State Delaware River Commission. Another tri-state compact commission was established in 1925. This commission formulated an allocation system, an operating policy, and pollution-control restrictions and responsibilities. Although this compact did not pass, it established the principle that any decision concerning the development of the Delaware River needed agreement from all the states touching its waters. One of the major points of contention in every discussion concerning water use of the Delaware was New York City’s access to the river. Pennsylvania, particularly, did not see why New York City should receive access, especially when such access was a disadvantage to Pennsylvania communities either directly on the river or in close proximity. After continuous discussion and some heated arguments over water rights, the 1929–1931 Delaware River Case in the U.S. Supreme Court finally settled the controversy over New York City’s right to tap the waters of a river many miles from its boundaries. Much to the frustration of Pennsylvania, the Supreme Court granted water rights to New York. Shortly after the Supreme Court case, the Army Corps of Engineers developed its first plan for the Delaware. This 1934 proposal was huge, similar to the Tocks Dam Project of 30 years later, and included 16 dams. However, due to the Depression, the massive 1934 proposal failed to gain backing. Interest in recreational development on the Delaware has a much shorter history than either water containment or power generation. Several of the earliest dam studies had discussed recreation as a side benefit of hydropower; however, when the focus shifted to water supply, consideration of recreation was dropped because water recreation usually is incompatible with human water consumption. A 1946 Philadelphia study that concluded the city would have to filter water from a reservoir anyway meant that recreation could be used to justify dam projects. Thereafter, water recreation became one of the major arguments used to sell reservoir proposals. Accordingly, in a 1951 proposal, recreation was cited as one of the major benefits of building the dam.

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The first promotion of a “national park” involving the Delaware Water Gap occurred in the 1940s. It had limited impact and received some support from Monroe County, Pennsylvania, interests only. The scenic park discussed by the promoters consisted primarily of a limited road network with scenic vistas running around the Delaware Water Gap and nearby environs. Through the mid-1950s, numerous proposals for Delaware River development had been discussed and ultimately rejected for a variety of reasons, the most important being money and interstate squabbles concerning jurisdiction and allocation of resources. However, interest in development was not dead, as was evidenced by Pennsylvania buying land secretively in the Minisink Valley. Simultaneously, the Delaware River Basin states formed a special committee to study basin water needs and potential dam projects. A main stem dam across the Delaware north of the Gap was actually in the works, but was unfinished business when the catastrophic and deadly flood of 1955 provided a most compelling argument for controlling the waters of the Delaware and its tributaries and doing it quickly.3 The flood proved to be a major turning point because it forced some acceleration of discussion for river management, and, most important, it guaranteed that the federal government would now be a major player in any plan for the Delaware Valley. In fact, in 1959 a study was published recommending that the federal government be a partner in the compact management with the four Delaware River Basin states. Following this study, pro-dam forces moved into high gear to gain public support for a project that was touted as “a Central Park for the megalopolis.” The considerable speeches, articles, and pamphlets produced during this time focused on the national importance of the project, with the National Park Service arguing that Tocks Island Reservoir could become “the most significant non-urban recreation area in the Eastern United States” (U.S. Army, Delaware River Basin Report, 1960, vol. 4, appendix 1, p. 132). In response to widespread Congressional and public support, President Lyndon Johnson signed a bill into law on September 1, 1965, that made the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area a reality. By the end of 1965, proponents of a Delaware River dam had every reason to rejoice. All the elements needed to build Tocks Island Dam were in place: federal authorization, the creation of an interstate agency, and universal popular backing. 3 The summer of 1955 started dry, but the drought ended on August 12 when Hurricane Connie hit the North Carolina coast. During the next 48 hours, the hurricane dropped tremendous amounts of water on the eastern states. Hurricane Connie was followed immediately by Hurricane Diane, which resulted in torrential rains on the Delaware River Basin. Maximum flooding occurred on both the Delaware River and its tributaries. On a few streams, measurements were two to five times greater than previously recorded. On Brodhead Creek, floodwaters destroyed a summer camp, killing 37 women and children, and flooding in the watershed accounted for 100 deaths. The highest flow was observed at Riegelsville below Easton, Pennsylvania, and the flood crested at Trenton with a 12% greater flow than ever seen before at this location. The flood of 1955 caused $500 million in property losses in 13 states. Approximately 20% of these losses occurred in the Delaware River Basin.

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Acceptance of the Tocks Island Dam project had been a well-orchestrated communication and political campaign. After this campaign, building the dam would be easy. Despite their jubilation at this point, however, sponsors of the project would never actually break ground for the Tocks Dam. The controversy at Sunfish Pond provided a prelude for the troubles the Tocks Island project was to face in the future. Sunfish Pond is a 44-acre pond located on the top of Kittatinny Mountain in New Jersey, about 1,000 feet above the Delaware. The Appalachian Trail skirts its western shore, and the pond is often the destination of day hikers from the Delaware Water Gap. It is a beautiful spot that would be destroyed by the pump-storage system, an important part of the Tocks Reservoir and Dam proposal. Until 1965, the public remained ignorant of the Kittatinny Mountain Project and the ensuing destruction of Sunfish Pond. In that year, however, two residents of Warren County, New Jersey, began independent attempts to save Sunfish Pond. Glenn Fisher and Casey Kays began separate letter-writing campaigns and signature collections to stop the threat to the Pond. Fisher organized the Lenni Lenape League, named after the Native American group that had originally occupied the area. The League’s purpose was to “Save Sunfish Pond” and, to accomplish this goal, they published a newsletter, wrote letters to decision makers, and organized pilgrimages to the pond. These planned visits were designed to introduce people to the scenic grandeur of the area and to gain media attention for opposition to the pump-storage facility. Eventually, a massive letter-writing campaign and a pilgrimage reaching almost a thousand participants (including Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas, who received considerable media attention because of his prominence and his age) forced people to look more closely at the massive project that had recently received the federal green light. The “Save Sunfish Pond” campaign created a genuine problem for the pro-Tockers. From a practical perspective, the pumped-storage project increased the benefits of the Tocks Island Dam. However, although this facility was seen as beneficial from a water usage viewpoint, from the perspective of those favoring recreation and nature it was obviously industrial development and, consequently, in direct conflict with the purported purposes of the national recreation area. Also, it destroyed the integrity of the universally beloved Appalachian Trail. As a result of this exposure, many conservation organizations in New Jersey, along with the Delaware Valley Conservation Association in Pennsylvania, reexamined what actually was happening at Tocks. Although a compromise was reached with electric companies and Sunfish Pond was saved, this controversy immediately led to a new rallying cry of “Save all of Sunfish Pond including its watershed,” reflecting a concern that the reservoir would leak into Sunfish Pond and destroy its ecological integrity. By 1969, the Lenni Lenape League received the Holiday Magazine Award for a Beautiful America for its Sunfish Pond fight, sponsored another hike to the pond that had more than 1,900 participants, and joined forces with the Sierra Club and other groups to persuade the government to “restudy the wisdom of Tocks Island” (Albert, 1987, p. 101).

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The Save Sunfish Pond fight made thousands of people aware of the large construction projects threatening the natural beauty of the Tocks Island region. As a result, the Sunfish Pond controversy became a warmup for the more intense fight to halt the dam’s construction entirely. THE IMPORTANCE OF LEGITIMACY Although frequently cited by theorists as one of the most important characteristics of effective communication, “legitimacy” is very difficult to define. Many modern social and political philosophers have attempted to clarify legitimacy, and in doing so they have reached both complementary and contradictory descriptions of this elusive concept. By necessity, this chapter provides a limited description of legitimacy, highlighting a selected number of definitions and interpretations that provide a theoretical foundation for the analysis of the Tocks Island controversy. This discussion relies primarily on the views of legitimacy presented by Jürgen Habermas and Max Weber. Although these two theorists do not agree on all characteristics of modern legitimacy, they have discussed a number of complementary points concerning this topic that provide the grounding for a systematic and communication-based approach to the loss of government legitimacy at Tocks Island and the simultaneous growth of legitimacy for grass-roots communicators. In a number of his works, Habermas has addressed the importance of legitimacy in modern political and social life. He believes that legitimacy implies that “there are good arguments for a political order’s claim to be recognized as right or just” (1979, p. 178). He defines legitimacy as a rational process that establishes “a political order’s worthiness to be recognized” (1979, p. 178). In his definition of legitimacy, Habermas explored three characteristics that are essential to clarifying that role persuasive communication plays in debates concerning legitimate powers. First, according to Habermas, legitimacy is a contestable claim of validity, an observation that reinforces the important role that communication plays in legitimacy’s creation and maintenance. He maintained that legitimacy concerns a relationship between those who assert legitimacy and those who grant this power to another. Robert Francesconi (1982) reinforced Habermas’s view by defining legitimacy as “an ongoing process of reason-giving, actual and potential, which forms the basis of the right to exercise authority as well as the willingness to defer to authority” (p. 49). According to Habermas, legitimacy “is used above all in situations in which the legitimacy of an order is disputed, in which, as we say, legitimation problems arise” (1979, pp. 178–179). Second, although he has asserted that “good reasons” form the basis for legitimacy, Habermas has argued that all good reasons that support legitimacy must be grounded in agreed-on social principles and values. Because the state and powerful institutions often justify their legitimacy on their ability to maintain stability, their claims to legitimacy are always related to “the social-integrative preservation of a normatively determined social identity” (1979, pp. 182–183). Accordingly,

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“legitimations serve to make good this class, that is, to show how and why existing (or recommended) institutions are fit to employ political power in such a way that the values constitutive for the identity of the society will be realized” (1979, p. 183). The motive for conforming to the views or to the plans of a powerful source is the expectation that their power will be exercised in accord with legitimate norms of action. In summary, the rationality that is essential for legitimacy is not evaluated by some abstract principle of logic, but rather by a practical concept of whether the policy reflects agreed-on social values that are universally accepted as part of the “general will” and guaranteed consensus. The third characteristic essential to Habermas’s concept of legitimacy centers on what he has seen as distinctive of legitimacy in modern democracies. In the constitutional state, legitimacy cannot be imposed by force. Instead, the public must be persuaded to accept the claim to legitimacy. However, despite the subsequent need to argue legitimacy in the constitutional state, modern legitimacy lacks certain dynamic qualities because opposition and public participation have been institutionalized and normalized into the actual operating procedures of governance. Thus, when legitimation is debated, it is justified often in terms of processes being fulfilled or as expressions of a society that systematically invites universal participation in the decision-making process. Even included in this legitimate process is institutional opposition. As Habermas noted: Opposition to the system … has been defused by regulated competition between political parties. Among other things, this has institutionalized oppositional roles, formalized and rendered permanent the process of legitimation, periodized variations in legitimation and canalized the withdrawal of legitimation in the forms of changes of regimes, and finally it has involved everyone in the legitimation process as voting citizens. (1979, p. 194)

According to Habermas, procedures are frequently used in modern democracies as the rational grounds on which the validity of legitimation is based: “The idea of an agreement that comes to pass among all parties, as free and equal, determines the procedural type of legitimacy of modern times” (1979, p. 185). A number of theorists argue that trust in both the system and in those who represent the system is central to legitimacy, particularly in democratic societies. However, unexamined trust weakens the political process, and legitimate sources get into trouble if they fail to connect policies to principles. Because legitimation is often based on common values and/or on procedures that guarantee opposition and access to the system, the legitmating rationale does not always have to be stated. As Habermas noted, “The ultimate motive for readiness to follow is a citizen’s conviction that he could be discursively convinced in case of doubt” (1975, p. 43). After all, what are accepted as reasons and what produces consensus, and thereby shapes motives, according to Habermas, “depends on the level of justification required in a given situation” (1979, p. 183).

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John Fraser (1974) reinforced Habermas’s view of modern legitimacy by noting, Legitimacy does not refer to whether authorities or structures follow some concrete set of objective legal rules but to the extent to which members of a political system believe that the authorities and structures are adequate to meet the members’ own expectations as to how the political system ought to behave. (p. 118)

Habermas has spent little time discussing how groups that attack institutional legitimacy gain legitimate powers themselves, although he has been keenly aware of the fact that many arguments over legitimacy actually are conflicts over class. And while he has argued that most legitimacy conflicts are debated on the level of social principle, he has clearly understood that such principles are based often on class distinctions (1979). Like Habermas, Max Weber focused on those groups and institutions with legitimate power already. Despite his emphasis on the powerful, however, Weber provided important insights into the relationship between legitimacy and a balance between “subjective” and “external” arguments that are highly useful for analyzing how outsiders gain legitimacy. (For a detailed discussion of these two arguments, see Francesconi, 1982). First, Weber, like Habermas, believed that those who argue for legitimacy must establish and reestablish themselves through “subjective” arguments. By this, he meant that legitimate institutions, especially those in modern democratic societies, must assert that the current society represents agreed-on values (Francesconi, 1982). Second, Weber argued, that legitimacy must be argued through the “expectation of specific external effects” (1968, vol. I, p. 33). A legitimate source must promise tangible benefits. In the first instance, a proposal for building a dam will be argued so that the proposal is represented as consistent with socially shared values. In the second, a dam proposal will be argued in terms of the benefits the public will reap from such a plan, benefits that can be achieved only through the current system and its legitimate agents. According to Weber, both forms of legitimacy depend on rhetorical ability. In the first, the ability is to connect current proposals with cultural principles, and in the second, the ability is to make realistic promises and to demonstrate that “external effects” are being realized. In contrast, arguments that challenge legitimacy will state that a current plan violates cultural principles and will bring about disasters rather than benefits. Weber believed that those in power and those opposing power must use both forms of argument in balance to sustain legitimacy. He asserted, “The legitimacy of a system of domination may be treated sociologically only as the probability that, to a relevant degree, the appropriate attitudes will exist, and the corresponding practical conduct ensues” (1968, vol. I, p. 214). Despite a need for both “subjective” and “external” justifications for legitimacy, many arguers in modern democracies rely more on “external effects” as the pri-

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mary way to guarantee legitimacy at the expense of “subjective” or value-oriented methods. According to Habermas: “Meaning” is a scarce resource and is becoming even scarcer. Consequently, expectations oriented to use values—that is, expectations monitored by success—are rising in the civil public …. Missing legitimation must be offset by rewards conforming to the system. A legitimation crisis arises as soon as the demands for such rewards rise faster than the available quantity of value, or when expectations arise that cannot be satisfied with such rewards. (1975, p. 73)

Both Habermas and Weber noted that it is profoundly difficult for noninstitutional groups to gain legitimacy. Initially, most social movements have little or no legitimacy, and the rhetorical deck is stacked against them in favor of “legitimate” institutions and leaders. Despite this inherent difficulty, legitimacy is the principle goal or demand of any social movement. The questions are then: How do they gain legitimacy? How do they change from having little or no legitimate power to being seen in a relationship that clearly redefines their role? It is essential to answer these questions when explaining how the Tocks Island Dam Project was halted by a group of communicators clearly outside of institutionalized power. THE BATTLE OVER LEGITIMACY ON THE DELAWARE As early as September 1959, the Water Research Foundation and the Delaware River Basin Association released a slick pamphlet entitled Water for Recreation, Today and Tomorrow to promote the construction of a major dam on the Delaware as the centerpiece for a vast recreational facility. This widely distributed pamphlet established the arguments that were used by pro-Tocks communicators for the next 15 years as they faced ever-increasing opposition against their dream project. The pro-Tocks rationale presented in this early pamphlet and subsequent communication documents serves as an example of what Habermas has maintained often passes for rational legitimacy in modern democracies. To argue legitimacy, pro-Tockers relied almost exclusively on “external benefits” with little attempt to balance this argument with a justification based on social principles and values. Instead of justifying their project, for instance, on a renewed vision of the nation or even with discussions of progress, pro-Tockers instead combined promises of external rewards with appeals to institutional legitimacy and established procedures. In all pro-Tocks brochures, press releases, and speeches, the authors promised that dam construction and park development would provide socially valuable external rewards: flood control, increased water reserves for both domestic and industrial use, electricity generation, and most important for the general public, recreation. In the category of recreational benefits, the Tocks Project and the DWGNRA promised an almost endless list of possibilities:

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The waters of the lake would be excellent for such activities as bathing, fishing, and boating. Its banks could be developed in such a fashion as to satisfy the broadest range of outdoor recreational interests, with picnic grounds, sites for group camping, cabins and cottages, trails flanked by rare and attractive phenomena, scenic drives, and parking areas overlooking the water and surrounding land formations. (Water Resources Foundation for the Delaware River Basin, 1959, p. 21)

The promise of external rewards was found everywhere in pro-Tocks communications. For instance, external rewards were the focus of a documentary film produced in 1962, a 10-page pamphlet produced in 1964 with full-page photographs entitled Tocks Island and Outdoor Recreation for the Crowded East (Water Resources Foundation for the Delaware River Basin, 1964), and a 1965 pamphlet, Tocks Island National Recreation Area—A Proposal (U.S. National Park Service, 1965). Recreational benefits were explored even more positively in a consultant’s report that received wide media attention and that argued enthusiastically that the DWGNRA was destined to become the “Central Park of the megalopolis.” Robert R. Nathan Associates (1966) focused on colossal positive benefits in this persuasive report that compared DWGNRA to Central Park in New York City. Like Central Park, the Delaware Recreation Area was to become the focal point of the East, and just as NYC grew around Central Park, so too would the East develop and prosper around the reservoir and park area: “As it is impossible to conceive of New York City today without Central Park, so too will it be impossible to think of the East’s super-city without recognizing the benefits of the national recreation area” (p. 14). The external rewards argument remained basically unchanged for two decades as is evident in pro-dam pamphlets printed later in the 1970s, such as The Keystone Project: Tocks Island Revisited (Water Resources Foundation for the Delaware River Basin, 1971). Although this brochure attempted to answer 13 “environmental” questions in response to negative scientific studies and opposition attacks, the majority of the pamphlet sounded as if it had been written a decade earlier in its reiteration of the benefits of the dam. Even a widely distributed pamphlet written late in the campaign by four pro-Tocks congressmen failed to add much to the legitimacy argument beyond responding to a number of environmental questions. Again, the majority of the pages were filled with descriptions, seen often before, of how good the world would be and what positive benefits would be achieved once the Tocks project was finally completed. As Albert (1987) noted, “The pro-Tocks arguments were spelled out many times during the controversy. Most were restatements of the need for the project …. The alleged benefits of the project, … were spelled out again and again” (p. 125). According to our discussion of legitimacy, communicators cannot ever depend solely on promises to justify their own legitimacy or a policy based on it. It is also essential in a legitimation debate to substantiate the belief that responsible parties are capable and willing to deliver on the promises they make. Thus, it becomes imperative to maintain the legitimacy of a source through the usual manner of insti-

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tutional connections and valued procedures. That is, a source promising rewards must be perceived as a representative of institutions that have a past record for producing such rewards, as well as proving that all the necessary procedural steps that guarantee good decision making in a democratic society have been encouraged and followed to reach the plan being proposed. These procedures include using the best science available, employing appropriate decision-making committees, and encouraging practices that invite all voices to be heard in the debate. Throughout the conflict over Tocks, the pro-dam arguers continuously attempted to reassert their legitimacy through these often-used arguments. However, these arguments experienced diminishing success as anti-Tockers increased their attacks against the value of the promised rewards by disclosing what would be lost environmentally and socially with dam construction. Likewise, attacks against the legitimacy of institutions in general and the Army Corps of Engineers and the National Park Service in particular diminished government credibility. Finally, a strong case was established through grass-roots organizations for believing that democratic processes had been violated via secret deliberations that purposively excluded locals who were asked to sacrifice their ancestral homes for the “Central Park of the megalopolis.” Consequently, established institutions, which recently had been able to assume almost boundless legitimacy, were seen as inept and as violators of many sacred democratic principles and the common trust. In much of their writing and speeches, pro-Tocks arguers proclaimed their connection with the federal government, the only body that was in a position to carry out a project as vast as Tocks Island. This project, “clothed in a sense of National interest” (Water Resource Foundation for the Delaware, 1959, p. 21), was so immense that only the federal government and its myriad of interrelated agencies were capable of successfully carrying it to completion. The national importance of the project and its related legitimacy was touted in most pro-Tocks publications such as Tocks Island National Recreation Area—A Proposal (1965) published by the National Park Service, in which fear was used to substantiate the argument that only the federal government with all its power and prestige could stop rampant land speculation along the Delaware and, thus, guarantee the success of Tocks: “It is difficult to conceive of such a large mountain and valley area overrun with developments and no longer an attractive amenity. Only Federal ownership of a large area—as recommended in this proposal—can prevent the development of this resource for the few. Only Federal intervention can reserve the natural scenic character for public recreation use” (National Park Service, 1965, pp. 4–5). So dependent were pro-Tocks arguers on connecting themselves with what were perceived as already established sources that they used every opportunity to reiterate the number of federal, regional, and local agencies that enthusiastically backed the project. As is noted in Tocks Island National Recreation Area—A Proposal: This project has the backing of so many national and local groups that they are too numerous to list here. All these groups believe in this project and are working to-

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gether to guarantee that the Tocks Island Dam and National Recreation Area provide the American taxpayer with the most comprehensive multi-purpose facility in the country. Although this project will take time and money, its rewards will be worth much more than the effort and dollars it takes to build this vast project. You can rely on the proven experience and knowledge that all the groups favoring this project bring to the table. Get ready, America, we have the people. We have the will. Let’s build Tocks. (p. 10)

Although it was obvious early in the dispute over Tocks that the opposition would find much to challenge about a legitimacy case based primarily on the external rewards argument, pro-Tockers rarely deviated from it. Their reluctance to connect external arguments with “subjective” arguments that legitimated the project through connections to common values and the general will helps explain why pro-Tocks arguments eventually sounded hollow and irrelevant as the debate ensued. Both Habermas and Weber maintained that “subjective” arguments are essential to sustain legitimacy, a concept that pro-Tockers did not seem to understand. As the proposed costs of the project skyrocketed, especially in the light of increased government financial commitment to the Vietnam War, and the dam experienced one postponement after another because of technical and environmental difficulties, legitimate institutions in charge of the project appeared inept and duplicitous. Likewise, the opposition’s increased attacks on individual external rewards promised by pro-Tockers and their determination to avoid any discussion of underlying principles gradually eroded any legitimacy the original plan and its backers had. Attacks against the dam developed almost immediately after the National Recreation Bill was passed in 1965, and this opposition received considerable media attention. For instance, following his famous hike to Sunfish Pond, William O. Douglas wrote an article for Playboy magazine in which he attacked the entire Tocks Island Project with the opening sentence, “The Army Corps of Engineers is public enemy number one” (cited in Dale, 1997, p. 151). Likewise, Time magazine published an editorial entitled “How to Cut the U.S. Budget.” High on the magazine’s list was the Delaware River Tocks Island Park, which it considered “nonessential” (Time, December 8, 1967, p. 38). Even local media that generally favored the dam began to look anew at the credibility of the project. The Bethlehem-Globe Times, for instance, as early as 1966 responded to the battle over Sunfish Pond and reported that if pumped storage ruined the recreational values of Tocks Island the result would be “one of the biggest hoaxes ever perpetuated in the name of the common good” (Bethlehem-Globe Times, November 21, 1966; cited in Albert, 1987, p. 97). Even people who represented institutions favoring the project released warnings of possible negative outcomes from the massive project. For instance, in their pro-Tocks report, Robert R. Nathan Associates (1966) warned of possible secondary impacts that might diminish the value of the project; such as the area developing into “another Coney Island with all the garish, crowded jumble that Coney Island connotes” (p. 104).

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Alongside many initial criticisms of the project, Nancy Shukaitis, president of the newly formed Delaware Valley Conservation Association, traveled to the nation’s capital in March 1965 to address the first public hearing on the Tocks Project. At this meeting, she established a rationale against the dam that would eventually help destroy the legitimacy of the project. She attacked the government’s rewards rationale by arguing that costs to the environmental integrity of the area and the social costs caused by relocation and destruction of communities far exceeded the benefits of the project. Second, she accused the federal government of violating procedures and democratic decision making through their secretive deliberations and their refusal to deal with area residents and their concerns. She argued that residents, not the federal government, should make decisions, through a local-based conservation program. This program would focus on preserving the integrity of the area and its unique environmental and social qualities, with the federal government limited only to an oversight role. Finally, she maintained that the federal government would probably not be able to deliver on their promises even if they were beneficial, because the government was using questionable science to justify the project while they ignored important opposing scientific data that pointed to negative conclusions concerning the recreational and environmental benefits of the dam (Albert, 1987, p. 114). The remainder of this chapter investigates further how this rationale established in 1965 provided ample argumentative power to help delegitimate the Tocks Island Dam Project. According to Stewart, Smith, and Denton (2001), the rhetoric of legitimization must be a combination of coactive and confrontational strategies. Coactive strategies are those that emphasize what Habermas and Weber described as subjective and procedural arguments. Common ground and similarities, shared experiences, and common cause become the focus of this argument. It is essential in order to affirm legitimacy for an arguer to show that the audience and the person or group proposing a plan share a view of what is good for the society. They must also believe that democratic procedures have been followed and encouraged. Coactive persuasion refers to all communication efforts that emphasize similarities between persuader and the audience. The individual or group desiring legitimacy must represent itself as respectful of society’s norms, values, and institutions. By using coactive rhetoric, however, a group cannot attain and sustain legitimacy, because it only establishes outsiders as “similar” to already established institutions. Therefore, a confrontational rhetoric is required to complement the coactive rhetoric in order to bring institutional legitimacy into question. Confrontational strategies emphasize dissimilarities, diverse experiences, and conflict with institutions and some audiences (2001, pp. 62–68). Robert Cathcart described rhetorical confrontation as a “ritual enactment that dramatizes the symbolic separation of the individual from the existing order” (1978, p. 236). Beginning in 1965, Nancy Shukaitis and other leaders of the Delaware Valley Conservation Association and members of the Lenni Lenape League used both coactive and confrontational rhetorical strategies to argue successfully that the

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Tocks Island Project must be stopped. They asserted coactively that they and other local groups represented more accurately than the government the underlying and most important principles of our society as well as the sentiments of most Americans. Likewise, they argued confrontationally that the federal government and most other pro-dam advocates were villains because they misrepresented the democratic decision-making process by consciously avoiding concerns of locals, distorting scientific evidence, and perpetuating a pro-business, exploitative perspective under the guise of environmental sensitivity. COACTIVE STRATEGIES: THE FIRST STAGE IN LEGITIMACY In 1970, two events occurred that reflected profound social changes in the United States following the turbulent 1960s. The first Earth Day and the passage of the National Environmental Policy Act, which required environmental-impact studies for federally funded projects, reflected the country’s developing concern over environmental degradation and the continued questioning of government integrity. Increased distrust aided many environmentalists as they asserted that proposed large-scale government projects looked more and more like dinosaurs. Anti-dam groups in the Delaware River Basin reflected newly articulated environmental sentiments and mined the increasing distrust of the federal government, business, and institutions to wage an effective, persuasive campaign by employing both coactive and confrontational rhetorical strategies. The Delaware Valley Conservation Association and other anti-dam persuaders used three basic strategies of coactive persuasion. First, they linked themselves with traditional rights and values as well as with family, community, hard work, ingenuity, and the free-enterprise system. As Habermas noted, the ability to persuade and establish legitimacy depends on how successfully movements can anchor their views to existing beliefs, identities, and values. Another aspect of this strategy is that protesters represent themselves as givers of truth. Therefore, they are more legitimate than established institutions because they are not hiding anything and are telling it like it really is. According to Stewart et al. (2001), “Coactive strategies tend to dominate the rhetoric of social movements during the early stages of protest when persuaders are attempting to make the public and institutions aware of an urgent, unaddressed problem and to gain entry to the playing field where problems are debated and resolved” (p. 66). From the beginning of opposition to the dam, environmental communicators argued that common people, and especially those directly affected by the dam proposal, were getting only a part of the picture. Because protesters demanded that all information be available for scrutiny, they stood for American values such as the democratic process, choice, and justice. As Nancy Shukaitis stated in 1966: It is our goal to inform people on issues that affect them directly. Isn’t this what American democracy is all about? We have been closing our ears to the unmistakable

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evidence that other people are making decisions for us. Many of these people have no history, no connection to this place. I ask you today, is this democracy? Is this America? (Rally speech of Delaware Valley Conservation Association, August 8, 1966, DWGNRA Library Vertical File Collection)

Likewise, Glenn Fisher of the Lenni Lenape League declared: We are not doing anything wrong; we are only doing what all good concerned citizens must do. We are making our voices heard. And I say it is about time. For too long, we have allowed other people to tell us how we should relate to our land. I believe that people must eventually take a stand. I choose to take a stand for this Pond, this small spot of water which is soon to be lost. I could not sleep if I would allow such a horrible thing to happen without expressing concern, without adding my voice in protest. The men in Washington and in Trenton have told us only what they want us to know—that the world will be a richer place for us all when the dam is built and energy is generated on the top of this mountain. I know better than they do because I have lived here a long time and I know that the world will be lessened when this spot of water is gone. (“Save Sunfish Pond” Rally, June 17, 1967, DWGNRA Library Vertical File Collection)

Mina Haefle, vice president of the Delaware Valley Conservation Association, said the public has been kept “deliberately in the dark”: “Why have we not been told that the Tocks water is not going to our washing machines, our suburban lawns, our municipal water supplies? Why haven’t we been told that the Tocks water is due to be gobbled up by a conglomerate of downstream nuclear power plants?” (Drachler, 1974, p. 2A). Connections with the land, its history, and local residents became a recurring rhetorical theme for the anti-dam communicators, connections that reinforced their commitment to family values, citizenship, and community. This coactive rhetorical strategy became particularly important when people were forced through eminent domain to sell land that had been in families for generations. As Nancy Shukaitis noted: “It is imperative that respect for the land be achieved through fully informing the citizenry of the heritage of the valley and all contained therein, rather than the amusement park approach that hails motorized sports cars and beer cans as the epitome of American recreation” (Drachler, 1974, p. 2A). Ms. Shukaitis used a sense of place and its history most emphatically in an outburst at a hearing: “How dare you! This is where I was born; this is where I met my husband and married. I know this land; I know these people. They are good; the land is good. You insult them both with your arrogance and secrets” (Hearing, November 2, 1966, DWGNRA Library Vertical File Collection). The second coactive strategy used by the DVCA and other protesters was to establish their actions as those of legitimate organizations in contrast to government

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institutions that were clearly presenting a biased and self-serving perspective. A common way of implementing this strategy is to identify legitimizers such as “organizations, speakers, writers, senators, clergy, entertainers, scientists, military leaders, war veterans, ex-presidents, and medical professionals” (Stewart et al., 2001, p. 65), and connect them either with the views of the group or the group itself. Anti-dam communicators used this strategy extensively by referring to different types of legitimizers. The first legitimizers were scientists, many of whom reinforced the views of the DVCA and began to accumulate evidence for the public that perhaps the environmental promises made by pro-Tockers were based on questionable data. As early as 1965, Professor Francis J. Trembley, a highly respected ecology professor at Lehigh University, signaled the alarm by arguing that fluctuations in the Tocks Island Reservoir caused by the pumped-storage operations would harm fish spawning in the reservoir (Albert, 1987). Later he legitimated the protesters by citing the potential water-quality problems associated with 10 million visitors to Tocks Island Reservoir. He stated, “Those who are against this project need to be listened to. The beautiful lake we are promised could become one gigantic cesspool” (Drachler, 1974, p. 2A). Other legitimizers used by protesters were officials with scientific backgrounds and policy-making or regulatory responsibilities who concluded that the Tocks Dam had scientific, managerial, or fiscal problems. For instance, local administrators condemned the project as a “billion dollar boondoggle” by arguing that the proposed reservoir would be clogged by uncontrolled growth of aquatic plants within 20 years of the dam’s construction (Cahill, 1968, p. 66). The Sussex County Freeholder and Planning Boards stated strongly at a public hearing, “This program, financed by tax dollars from every level of government, is economically unsound” (Hedin, 1974, p. 2). Joseph Maraziti, New Jersey congressman termed the Tocks dam “fiscal irresponsibility” and a management nightmare: “How can we continue with this project when no one really understands who will be in charge of what? To sacrifice people’s homes and a beautiful river when chaos reigns, seems to me very bad policy indeed” (Hedin, 1974, p. 2). The third legitimizers used by anti-dam activists were politicians, especially those who saw that their political futures were connected more with local residents’ concerns over environmental quality and relocation than with the visions of distant bureaucrats. Although many state and federal politicians continued to support the project, numerous local politicians jointed the anti-dam protesters. Assemblyman Robert C. Shelton from Warren argued, “The uprooting of people and the destruction of the upper Delaware cannot be justified as a public project” (Hays, 1974, p. 17). Likewise, Herbert Denenberg, a candidate for a state senatorial seat, asserted, “We must not sacrifice long term natural and historical treasures of the upper Delaware for short term goals of unworkable technologies” (“Kill Tocks Island Dam Project, Denenberg Urges,” 1974).

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The fourth legitimizers were local residents, who were either losing their ancestral homes to the project or who believed their traditional rural way of life was jeopardized by the development and the ensuing tourist hordes. Common folks are not used frequently as legitimizers because often they lack institutional credibility. However, anti-Tockers focused on nontraditional voices in their campaign to substantiate further their basic argument that the dam project necessitated a complete reexamination of traditional legitimacy. Local papers and public protest meetings relied on compelling stories of longtime area residents expressing alienation and betrayal. The Minisink Bull, a locally produced anti-dam newspaper edited by DVCA leader Joan Matheson, used many local-interest stories to communicate its primary message: The people of the Minisink Valley were being victimized by their government, and the multifaceted Tocks Island Dam Project represented big government abuse at its worst. Eventually, the Minisink Bull had a 400-copy pressrun, and was published 23 times in the period from 1966 to 1970, with each issue including “news,” editorials, cartoons, and, most persuasively, emotional accounts of people who were losing their homes, their ties with the community, their historical roots, and a landscape they had come to love. The account of Maggie Keminour and her brother Joe serves as an example of the type of story used in the Minisink Bull and eventually picked up by mainstream newspapers like the Philadelphia Inquirer. The headline of the Inquirer article read “Legacy of Tocks Dam: Bitter, Uprooted People” (Nordland, 1974, p. 1A). The article discussed the case of 75-year-old Maggie, “arthritic, blind in one eye and bent in the back” (p. 1A) and her 78-year-old brother, Joe, both of whom were forced to live in a “tired old house, where the wallpaper hangs on the walls like ill-fitting clothes. The kitchen is covered with tattered linoleum and the floors in their tiny bedrooms tilt at uncomfortable angles” (p. 1A). The reason the Keminours were forced to live in such conditions was because the federal government made them leave their home, a shameful act magnified even further by the pathetically small amount of money given for their land. The payment was so small that the Keminours were unable to purchase a home comparable to the one they had owned along the Delaware. The tragedy of such displaced persons is amplified by the loss of community and the loss of a connection with the land. As Edgar Weaver, a local resident, stated at a rally, “I feel as if I am on a boat set adrift. I always felt a part of my town and of the river and the woods surrounding my home. Now I feel lost and unconnected to everything” (Rally speech of Delaware Valley Conservation Association, August 8, 1968, DWGNRA Library Vertical File Collection). Protesters relied extensively on testimony from local residents to establish their legitimacy as they argued that these people possessed unique insights unavailable to the federal government or businesses, and that in a battle between powerful forces and the people it becomes imperative to assert the role of the common person in the decision-making process of a healthy democracy.

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The third coactive strategy the DVCA and anti-dam protesters used was transcendence. Through this strategy, people connect themselves with ultimate goods and those things identified by a society as being of paramount importance. In doing so, they become representatives of the people and ultimate communicators of the people’s will. By using this strategy, protesters against Tocks argued that they represented societal values and traditions. Transcendence was an extremely powerful strategy, especially when one considers the deep resentment many local people came to feel against the Tocks Project in general and the treatment they received from federal officials in particular during land acquisitions and policy discussions. As Albert (1987) stated, “If there was any doubt that Tocks Island Dam had its negative side, one only needed to look at the Minisink Valley in 1974. During the four years that the dam’s construction had been debated, the pastoral valley had become a war zone” (p. 132). Land acquisition for the dam and recreation area projects began in 1967. The mechanics were seemingly simple, as representatives from the Army Corps of Engineers visited a property and developed an estimate of its fair market value. However, almost immediately, most people concluded that the price a homeowner received for his or her property did not reflect the actual value, but rather personal connections the owner had with government agents. Many property owners believed that the government did not pay fair market value and that the prices paid did not allow them to purchase equivalent property outside the park boundaries. Feelings of isolation and suspicion were amplified even more as people moved out of the area, and roads and other services such as fire and police protection disappeared. People felt abandoned and robbed by the government. In direct response to these feelings, the Delaware Valley Conservation Association became the most outspoken local champion as they provided legal assistance, some psychological counseling, sympathy, and, most important, a mechanism for local stories to be told. The DVCA used these stories to legitimate their position as one of transcendence. Whereas the government and Tocks proponents were concerned with profits and development, DVCA and other protesters focused on the lives of people, the preservation of a heritage, and the value of nature. By arguing in contrast, the anti-Tocks communicators could move beyond the limited argument used exclusively by pro-Tockers, for whom justification for the dam was based on promises of selfish rewards. The anti-Tockers elevated the discussion to one of principles and values, a position they assumed that those in favor of the dam might have a difficult time advancing. Although appealing to transcendence, the DVCA sometimes used highly emotional means to communicate their message. For instance, Mina Haefele frequently sponsored press-bus tours of the areas of the Minisink Valley from which people had been displaced. Clearly, the purpose of these tours was to reinforce the image of a battle being waged between the forces of good and evil, between the distant and all-powerful government and poor disadvantaged victims. A newspaper article outlined one of Haefele’s tours:

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The spokeswoman for the DVCA took us to an area of the Minisink Valley which if we squinted we could see was at one time beautiful. It was now a landscape that reminded me of old movies of World War I in France. Half destroyed homes, piles of junk, a land abused. She also introduced us to a woman who used to live in the house who told us in a voice as soft as cornsilk about her life in this house and about her love for the river. (Norland, 1974, p. 2A)

Aside from using transcendence to become the “voice” of the people, the protesters also appealed to an emerging environmental sensitivity represented by Earth Day and other environmental victories in the early environmental movement. They argued, as did many environmentalists of the time, that a sensitivity based on a new relationship with the earth allows us to avoid earlier mistakes. The old paradigm is gone and a new view of the world and humankind allows us to look beyond profit and exploitation to a world in which humans can be rejuvenated in the natural world. This sentiment was expressed extensively in the early years of anti-dam protesting. For instance, Glenn Fisher argued: It is time to think differently about the relationship between us and nature. We can no longer afford to see nature as something we can use or destroy whenever we want. We are running out of land and out of time. If we rethink how we see nature, we cannot help but rethink how we define ourselves. Let’s tell Washington that we see a new world and that world includes free running rivers, forests, and people who are renewed in mind and spirit by them. (“Save Sunfish Pond,” Lenni Lenape League newsletter, April 10, 1969, p. 1)

Protesters opposed to the construction of the Tocks Island Dam used coactive rhetorical strategies effectively as they appealed to elevated principles that unified local audience members into a coherent group of communicators. Groups like the DVCA became the means for common people gaining a voice in the discourse, and anti-dam groups invited more and more diverse voices to join the battle. In doing so, they legitimated themselves and all those who finally stood up to the powerful and said, “No, the issue is not decided.” CONFRONTATION STRATEGIES: THE SECOND STAGE IN LEGITIMACY According to Stewart et al. (2001), coactive rhetoric cannot attain legitimacy on its own because it only establishes the movement as “similar” to the social order. Confrontational rhetoric is also required to force institutional legitimacy into question and present the protesters as being “different” from the established order. Confrontational rhetoric raises the protesters to a transcendent position by persuading most people that the social order is illegitimate and the protesters are legitimate by contrast (Wood & Jackson, 1982).

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Anti-dam protesters employed a number of confrontational strategies to show that establishment leaders, organizations, and their actions systematically distorted communication, created barriers, and subverted accountability. Robert Cathcart claimed that “confrontational rhetoric shouts ‘Stop!’ at the system, saying, ‘You cannot go on assuming you are the true and correct order; you must see yourself as the evil thing you are’” (1978, p. 243; cited in Stewart et al., 2001, p. 67). Anti-dam forces used a number of confrontational arguments against the government and the Tocks Dam Project. The first was a direct attack on the scientific data used to prove the safety of the project and its advantages. As Nancy Shukaitis stated in her testimony to the U.S. Congress: The foundering cost-benefit ratio of Tocks Island Dam is related to the problematical geology described in the attached statement. Beyond the question of whether this Dam should be built, is the more fundamental question of the validity of the science used to design the project. It is clear to many, that if the dam is built, god forbid, that it will be unsafe, and may in the not so distant future, cause a disaster of unspeakable horror. (U.S. Congress, September 5 1974; cited in Proceedings of the 1991 Delaware Water Gap 25th Anniversary Symposium, 1991, p. 25).

Most of the scientific criticism against the project had to do with flood control and recreational issues. The first attack was that the Army Corps of Engineers was misleading the public into believing that the Tocks Dam would stop a repeat of the horrifying flood of 1955. In fact, protesters argued that most of the flooding in 1955 took place on Delaware tributaries, and therefore would have been unaffected by the dam. Also, the reservoir would flood 30% more land than was covered by water during the worst of the flood. From these points, protesters concluded that either government scientists were stupid or deliberately misusing memories of flood horrors to justify a project of dubious value. As Joan Matheson of the DVCA stated after presenting conflicting scientific data about flood control, “I am willing to give the government scientists the benefit of the doubt—they are ill informed and have not investigated all the relevant data. If I were really cynical, I would say the Army Corps is just reminding us of the horrible days in 1955 to sell us a bad bill of goods” (Delaware Valley Conservation Association Rally, April 4, 1973, DWGNRA Library Vertical File Collection). As damaging as these condemnations of institutional science were, they were mild compared to those attacks related to the issue of recreation. For the government, recreation had become the most persuasive justification for the project with the general public; therefore, any significant attack on the viability of massive recreational opportunities caused considerable problems for the pro-dam position. Protesters used three issues to attack the government’s science concerning the ultimate benefits of the project for recreation. The first issue was eutrophication, or the degree of aquatic plant activity in a body of water. Eutrophication is a natural process through which lakes are eventu-

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ally converted to swamps and meadows. Under natural conditions, this process is usually very slow; however, when humans enrich the environment with nutrients such as those found in sewage, fertilizers, livestock wastes, and detergents, the process accelerates. The potential eutrophication of a reservoir in the Tocks Island area had been first raised in the 1930s, and this concern found a major voice in the 1960s in Dr. Francis Trembley who argued that the Tocks Lake had the potential for becoming “one big murky body of water” (Easton Express, December 12, 1966; cited in Albert, 1989, p. 107). This alarm was soon taken up by others, including civil engineer Thomas H. Cahill (1968), who concluded that “without positive action now, the chances are great that within a few short years, the clear lake will become clogged and polluted with masses of floating algae” (p. 66). Immediately after these scientific observations were made, anti-dam protesters began using eutrophication as a rallying cry. Government refusal to acknowledge the dangers of eutrophication clearly proved to many that the pro-Tockers were, at best, bad scientists and pig-headed, and, at worst, lying to the people and engaging in the most devious form of pork-barrel politics with little concern for either people or the integrity of the environment. Obviously, the DVCA encouraged the latter interpretation as they used the issue of eutrophication on signs at rallies: “It’s good for algae, not for fish,” “Let’s build a dam for algae, not for people, “ “It’s bad for the Shad,” and “In with Algae, Out with Trout.” The DVCA argued that, “The government is doing it to us again. They want us to believe that we will gain a beautiful recreation facility when what we will get is a 40-mile stinking green oil slick. No thanks!” (Nancy Shukaitis, April 5, 1973, DWGNRA Library Vertical File Collection). The eutrophication issue became even more heated when a report was released about huge chicken farms in New York state that were responsible for enormous amounts of waste being released into the upper Delaware. This discharge was not a major problem as long as the river was free flowing, but with the dam and reservoir, eutrophication and the ensuing possibility of salmonella poisoning would increase significantly. Disease was added to the rhetorical mix with environmental degradation and deceit. As Christopher Burke noted, the reservoir could “resemble a cesspool for upstream chickens. The idea of children swimming and boating in a fetid lake filled with tons of chicken manure, does not correspond very closely to the picture presented by the Army Corps” (Hays, 1974, p. 17). The second recreational issue used extensively by anti-dam protesters to undermine the legitimacy of the government was the condition of the beaches, or more accurately, the condition of mudflats. It was argued that government scientists had not considered water retreats and surges, and thus had concluded incorrectly that the lake would sustain recreational beaches. According to anti-dam forces, however, sound science proved that instead of being surrounded by beaches, the lake would soon be engulfed by mudflats that would actually disappear for much of the tourist season. The DVCA paid for an ad that appeared in a number of local newspapers that announced, “A Coming Attraction!” and showed a photo of mudflats at an Army Corps reservoir in southwestern Pennsylvania. The DVCA and other

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anti-dam groups continued to attack the legitimacy of government scientists, engineers, and their data. The final issue that questioned the integrity of government information was the impact of tourists and the development that would be needed to accommodate them. Whereas pro-dam proponents continued to argue that the recreation area would be the Central Park of the East and that it could accommodate comfortably an influx of people, anti-dam persuaders and local residents began to question this assumption and attack the data used to justify them. As Matheson stated, “The government would like us to believe that ten million visitors to the area a year will only have positive effects. How can this be? What will obviously happen will be strips of motels, hamburger stands, and gas stations, plus millions of feet trampling on the land, plus thousands of cans thrown out speeding car windows” (DWGNRA Library Vertical File Collection). Nancy Shukaitis was even more confrontational with the government on issue of secondary impacts: The Army Corps and other government officials must think we are incredibly stupid when they throw numbers at us in the millions of people a year, and then turn around, and say without blinking an institutional eye, that these people will not affect the area. The land will be protected, they say, and your lives will not change. How is this possible, and how is it possible that the government can think for one minute that we believe it when they say it is true? (DWGNRA Library Vertical File Collection)

The second confrontational argument used against the government and other pro-dam forces was that they were deceitful and disrespectful of the local people, their traditions, and their history. This confrontational strategy can be seen throughout the conflict over Tocks Island. It became an especially strong issue when the government committed two blunders that provided more ammunition to use against institutional legitimacy. After a number of people moved out of their homes along the river, the area became isolated and unprotected as the debate continued over the dam. During this time, a number of squatters moved into abandoned homes and, with their families, set up housekeeping. At the same time, vandalization of deserted buildings and even arson became a sport for local thugs. Many of the remaining residents, often elderly, were afraid to leave their homes. Causing major headaches for both the local residents and the federal government were the squatters who began farming the area. The core of the squatters (or river people) was made up of 1960s-style hippies who illegally occupied the valley for 5 years and who wanted to establish a counterculture. The river people created problems for the anti-dam protesters as well as for government agents. After all, those opposing Tocks wanted to establish a wilderness park with a free- flowing river devoid of recent settlers, especially hundreds of free

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spirits who were farming and engaging in unusual behavior. Luckily for the DVCA and others, the Army Corps acted in such a way that reinforced the image of their being ruthless and distant from the concerns of the people, while eliminating a problem for the anti-dam advocates. On September 17, 1971, after years of conflicts among the river people, local groups, and the government, federal marshals (under the orders of the Army Corps of Engineers) physically evicted all of the squatters and destroyed many of their homes and belongings by fire. It was not a picture of democracy at work. Even those who had ideological and social arguments with the squatters found it difficult to take in the scene of men, women, and children being dragged out of their beds by armed police. The DVCA and other anti- dam groups saw this unfortunate event as another opportunity to reinforce the view established earlier that the government was the problem, not the answer, and that when it came to dealing with people, the government’s basic goal was to win no matter who was hurt in the process. Shukaitis responded to the evictions: Obviously, the people who were rudely treated this morning eventually had to leave the area. But to be moved out like the victims of a Nazi purge is beyond what one can accept in a civilized society. Children in the mud watching their parents dragged away. Animals released from barns to roam without care. Possessions thrown into the mud. Homes set ablaze before people could even get pictures of their loved ones. This cannot be. How have we come to this state? We have only one group to blame, the government. Through their arrogance and failure to listen to the people, the government has brought tragedy to this once proud place. (Nordland, 1974, p. 2A)

The second government mistake that was exploited by anti-dam protesters was the destruction of buildings in the recreational area. The National Park Service and other government agencies represented the Delaware Water National Recreation Area to the public as a park that would have everything: recreation, scenery, wilderness, and history. Thus, preserving important historic buildings and even villages had always been an important part of the mix that attracted people originally to the National Recreational Area concept. Unfortunately for the National Park Service and the Army Corps of Engineers, during their attempts to rid the area of squatters and to hurry property acquisition a number of historically significant structures were torched or destroyed by mistake. When word got out that one of the area’s most historic churches and the only remaining single-room schoolhouse had been destroyed in error, the anti-dam protesters argued with new evidence that the federal government, although saying they wished to preserve local heritage, had revealed their true sentiments through their actions—they wanted only the dam with its vast reservoir, and the people and their history were seen as irritants to be dealt with in the most cost-effective way possible. Matheson expressed her outrage at this latest instance of government ineptitude and insensitivity:

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It would almost be laughable if it were not so tragic. The question that arises always in situations like this: Are they fools or are the villains? I have stopped asking this question. I no longer care. What I do care about and I know that you do too, is should I trust this land and its people and its history to a group so stupid as to engage in this comedy of errors or so villainous as to destroy all that made this place unique and remarkable? (Tocks Project May Be Doomed, 1975, p. 3A)

CONCLUSION The debate that erupted over the establishment of the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area and the Tocks Island Dam had a happy ending for the environmentalists. After all, they helped persuade thousands of local people, and eventually the media and a national audience, to join them in opposition to the federal government and a massive project that would have altered irreparably the ecological and social fabric of the area. Thus, the Delaware River conflict could be described as a classic David-and-Goliath story in which the all-powerful giant was stopped in its tracks by a small group of noble opponents who had little more than their voices as slingshots. However, the simplistic narrative formats we often use to describe complex human dramas are rarely adequate when we scrutinize events more carefully. After all, in the rough- and tumble-world of public persuasion, stances are often compromised in order to win persuasive advantage; and in their heated responses to others, communicators frequently adjust their positions by relying on standard tactics, such as polarization and vilification. Curiously, like most other debates concerning the designation of “special places,” the battle over the Tocks Island project led to a persuasive situation in which, on closer examination, neither side emerged pure or unsullied. The conflict over Tocks focused fundamentally on the issue of perceived legitimacy, and it appears reasonable to assume that institutions such as the Army Corps of Engineers and the National Park Service began this debate in the mid-1960s with high levels of legitimacy, and those who opposed the Tocks Project initially had very little. Being the underdogs, however, the protesters were afforded an opportunity to mine the changing social climate of the United States in the 1960s to their benefit as they argued that traditional institutions no longer deserved unquestioned obedience. Institutions such as the Army Corps of Engineers, they argued, were out of touch with most Americans because, through complacency and arrogance, they had become part of the problem rather than being part of the solution. As the country became embroiled in the war in Vietnam, many groups began to reexamine costly projects like Tocks not only because they were astonishingly expensive, but also because they could be perceived as being monolithic expressions of an earlier time when change and progress were accepted goods and when it was almost universally agreed that government knew best how to solve all problems. However, the damming of Glen Canyon and the war in Vietnam provided evidence that neither of these assumptions were totally reasonable.

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As this case study clearly shows, government agencies appeared to be unaware of the significant cultural shift that their opposition recognized and used so effectively. Perhaps years of unquestioned compliance blinded the government to the necessity of reestablishing a legitimate case based on what Habermas and Weber considered to be “good reasons.” Or perhaps their failure to change and adapt reflects their denial of a new social environment that, by its very existence, diminished their legitimate advantage significantly. Whatever the reason, it is clear that they argued the Tocks case badly, as evidenced by both their tedious repetition of arguments that clearly were not working, and the resultant erosion of their support in a wide variety of publics. In order to justify such massive projects that only a decade earlier seemed to require little examination or philosophical deliberation, the government needed to explore reasonably and thoroughly the underlying principles of our government and its relationship with the people. Throughout the debate, the anti-Tocks arguers frequently requested such an analysis from the government, but it never came. Consequently, the government’s already weakened position was open to gradual but inevitable deterioration as more environmental, engineering, and social problems developed over the 15 years of the Tocks debate. On the one hand, we have government agencies that clearly committed major blunders in both action and communication. They were probably blinded by their own sense of mission, perceived legitimacy, and assurance that what they were doing was innovative, good, and noble. On the other hand, we have a small group of protesters who were able to redefine a discussion that appeared to be already complete and, thus, helped defeat a major popular project. To their credit, the Delaware Valley Conservation Association and the Lenni Lenape League announced to the world that opposing opinions against massive development and environmental degradation existed and that they now had a voice. Their voice was fairly sophisticated rhetorically, considering their concentrated use of both coactive and confrontational strategies. The anti-dam protesters argued persuasively that they had a form of legitimacy that powerful institutions such as the Army Corps of Engineers and the National Park Service did not. As such, they spoke not just for themselves, but also for the people and for the land, while they used their life-long connection with the place as a basis for asserting their legitimacy. REFERENCES Albert, R. C. (1987). Damming the Delaware: The rise and fall of Tocks Island Dam. University Park: Pennsylvania State University Press. Albert, R. C. (1991). The evolution of Tocks Island Dam and the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area: 1783 to 1965. In DWGNRA: 25th Anniversary Symposium (pp. 5–9). East Stroudsburg, PA: National Park Service. Cahill, T. H. (1968). Cultural eutrophication in Tocks Island Reservoir. Unpublished M.A. thesis, Villanova University, Villanova, PA. Cathcart, R. S. (1978, Spring). Movements: Confrontation as rhetorical form. Southern Speech Communication Journal, pp. 233–247.

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Cathcart, R. S. (1980, Winter). Defining social movements by their rhetorical form. Central States Speech Journal, pp. 267–273. Dale, F. (1997). Delaware diary: Episodes in the life of a river. New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press. Drachler, S. (1974, April 24). DRBC holds 11-hour Tocks hearing. Pocono Record, p. 2A. Farmer, J. (1999). Glen Canyon dammed: Inventing Lake Powell and the canyon country. Tucson: University of Arizona Press. Francesconi, R. A. (1982, February). James Hunt, the Wilmington 10 and institutional legitimacy. Quarterly Journal of Speech, pp. 47–59. Fraser, J. (1974). Validating a measure of national political legitimacy. American Journal of Political Science, Vol. 18, pp. 117–134. Habermas, J. (1979). Communication and the evolution of society. Boston: Beacon Press. Habermas, J. (1975). Legitimation crisis. Boston: Cambridge Harvey, M. (1994). A symbol of wilderness: Echo Park and the American conservation Movement. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press. Hays, D. (1973, April 24). Tocks draws praise and fire at last hearing. Star Ledger, p. 17. Hedin, J. (1974, April 23).Officials to speak both for, against Tocks Dam plan. New Jersey Herald, p. 2. Kill Tocks Island Dam project, Denenburg urges. (1974, April 23). Scanton Tribune, p. 5A. Nathan, R. Associates (1966). Central Park in megalopolis: The potential impact of the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area on its surrounding communities. Washington, DC: Communication Service Corp. National Park Service. (1965). Tocks Island National Recreation Area—a proposal. East Stroudsburg, PA: Author. Norland, R. (1974, June 2). Legacy of Tocks Dam: Bitter, uprooted people. Philadelphia Inquirer, pp. 1A–4A. Oravec, C. (1984, November). Conservationism vs. preservationism: The “public interest” in the Hetch Hetchy controversy. Quarterly Journal of Speech, pp. 444–458. Porter, E., & Brower, D. (1963). The place no one knew: Glen Canyon on the Colorado. San Francisco: Sierra Club. Sale, K. (1993). The green revolution: The American environmental movement, 1962–1992. New York: Hill & Wang. Stegner, W. (1955). This is Dinosaur Echo Park country and its magic rivers. New York: Knopf. Stewart, C. J., Smith, A. A., & Denton, R. E. (2001). Persuasion and social movements. Prospect Heights, IL: Waveland. Tocks project may be doomed. (1975, October 4). Pocono Record, p. 3A. Water Resources Foundation for the Delaware River Basin. (1959). Water for recreation, today and tomorrow. Philadelphia: Author. Water Resources Foundation for the Delaware River Basin. (1964). Tocks Island and outdoor recreation for the crowded East. Philadelphia: Author. Water Resources Foundation for the Delaware River Basin. (1971). The Keystone Project: Tocks Island revisited. Philadelphia: Author. Weber, M. (1968). Economy and society (G. Ross & C. Wittich, Eds.). New York: Bedminster. Wood, J. L., & Jackson, M. (1982). Social movements: Development, participation and dynamics. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth.

Author Index

A Abram, D., 118, 130 Abt, R.C., 101, 112 Albert, R.C., 134, 135, 138, 141, 145, 148, 149, 152, 154, 157, 161 Amy, D., 42, 44 Andreasen, A.R., 102, 113 Arkin, W.M., 81, 95 Arnold, R. 5, 6, 8, 10, 11, 12, 15 Arny, W.R., 63, 68 Asen, R., 24, 36, 44

B Ball, J., 116, 120, 121, 123, 124, 126, 127, 131 Barber, B.R., 22, 43, 44 Barker, C., 129, 130 Barletta, M., 50, 68 Barnes-Kloth, R., 51, 68 Bath, A., 101, 113 Baudrillard, J., 54, 58, 60, 68 Baumann, D., 4, 15 Beebe, G.S., 100, 101, 113 Beck, U., 57, 68 Bell, M., 25, 44 Bell, R.C., 65, 69 Berg, B.L., 103, 104, 113 Berry, T., 117, 130, 130 Bessette, J.M., 19, 22, 44, 44 Birdsell, D.S., 80, 94 Bjork, R.S., 74, 94 Blackman, T., 7, 15

Blewett, J., 117, 130 Bohman, J., 19, 22, 44 Bohr, N., 54, 68 Bonfield, T., 82, 95 Borg, M. J., 119, 120, 130 Boyer, P., 54, 66, 68 Bradsher, K., 128, 130 Braithwaite, V., 19, 20, 22, 45 Brennan, L.A., 101, 113 Brick, P., 1, 2, 4, 15, 15 Bright, A.D., 101, 101, 113 Brower, D., 137, 162 Brulle, R., 10, 15 Brummet, B., 64, 68, 75, 80, 95 Bruner, M., 20, 44. 44 Buechler, S.M., 13, 15 Burger, J., 51, 71 Burke, K., 28, 44, 50, 51, 55, 64, 66, 68, 79, 95, 120-121, 130 Button, M., 20, 22, 24, 42, 44 Byrnes, P., 4, 16

C Caldicott, H., 66, 68 Cahill, T.H., 152, 157, 161 Callon, M., 78, 79, 85, 92, 95 Campbell, J.A., 3, 16 Campbell, K.K., 10, 16 Capra, F., 118, 119, 130, 130 Caputi, J., 53, 54, 60, 68 Carpenter, E.H., 101, 111, 113 Cathcart, R.S., 10, 16, 149, 162 Chaloupka, W., 51, 68 163

164 Chambers, S., 24, 44 Check, T., 23, 44 Chernus, I., 54, 55, 68 Cheney, G., 75, 96 Clark, R., 23, 46 Clark, R.W., 56, 68 Cochran, C., 27, 44 Cochran, T.B., 81, 95 Cockburn, A., 14, 16 Cohn, C., 53, 65, 68 Condit, C.M., 5, 17, 20, 27, 28, 45 Cooren, F., 73, 76, 77, 78, 79, 93, 95 Corbin, 103, 104, 114 Cordesman, A.H., 50, 60, 68 Cortner, H.J., 101, 111, 113 Crowfoot, J.E., 23, 45

D Dale, F., 148, 162 Dalton, R.J., 52, 60, 68 Daniels, S.E., 20, 43, 45 Daniel, T.C., 101, 111, 113 Davis, H.M., 82, 95 Davis, S., 51, 52, 59, 60, 72 Dawson, M.C., 41, 45 Dear, M., 93, 95 DeGennarao, R., 41, 48 DeGreiff, P., 19, 20, 22, 45 Delicath, J.W., 127, 130 Demo, A.T., 3, 16 Denton, R.E., Jr., 10, 17, 149, 150, 152, 155, 156, 162 Depoe, S.P., 50, 51, 51, 59, 60, 60, 62, 68, 72 Derrida, J., 57, 68 Dewig, R., 34, 40, 45 Diamond, J.N., 80, 97 Drachler, S., 151, 152, 162 Dryzek, J.S., 14, 15, 17, 19, 20, 22, 45 Duncan, H.D., 28, 45 Dycus, S., 52, 60, 68

E Easterbrook, G., 115, 128, 130 Eckersley, R., 43, 45 Edelman, M., 24, 28, 30, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 38, 39, 41, 45

AUTHOR INDEX Edmunds, H., 102, 113 Egan, T., 1, 3, 9, 16 Einstein, A., 56, 63 Ehrlich, A.H., 12, 16 Ehrlich, P.R., 12, 16 Elliott, M., 20, 33, 42, 45 Endress, V.A., 80, 97 Ewel, J.J., 100, 114

F Falk, R., 61, 70 Fancher, B., 26, 45 Farmer, J., 136, 137, 138, 162 Farrell, R.T., 23, 45 Fehner, T.R., 81, 95 Felski, R., 41, 45 Ferguson, F., 54, 69 Fiorino, D.J., 19, 45 Fishbein, M., 101, 111, 114 Fisher, W.R., 53, 69, 75, 95 Fiske, M., 103, 114 Flowers, R.W., 101, 113 Fontana, A., 103, 113 Foucault, M., 50, 52, 63, 69 Francesconi, R.A., 142, 144, 162 Fraser, J., 144, 162 Fraser, N., 41, 43, 45 Freer, B., 75, 75, 76, 95, 97 Frey, J.H., 103, 113 Freudenburg, W.R., 93, 95 Fried, J.S., 100, 101, 111, 113, 114 Fritsch, J., 4, 16

G Gallagher, M., 82, 83, 86, 92, 95 Galton, F., 54, 69 Garb, P., 52, 68 Gardner, P.D., 101, 101, 111, 111, 113 Gastil, J., 19, 22, 24, 43, 45 Gerry, T.M.F., 51, 69 Gerth, J., 62, 69 Gieryn, T.F., 53, 69 Gilless, J.K, 101, 113 Glaser, B.G., 103, 113 Glenn, M., 99, 100, 113 Glitzenstein, J.S., 101, 113

AUTHOR INDEX Golding, D., 20, 46 Goldzwig, S., 75, 96 Goodnight, G.T., 53, 69 Gosling, F.G., 81, 95 Gottlieb, A., 1, 2, 8, 9, 11, 14, 16 Greimas, A.J., 73, 77, 78, 96 Guidera, A., 26, 47 Gusfield, J., 80, 96 Gusterson, H., 75, 76, 96 Gutmann, A., 19, 22, 46

165

J Jackson, M., 155, 162 Jackson, R.R., 12, 16 Jacobson, S.K., 99, 101, 111, 113 Jervis, R., 60, 69 John, D., 19, 23, 46 Johnson, M.R., 51, 70 Jones, S.M., 100, 114 Jorgensen-Earp, C.R., 3, 16 Juanillo, N.K., 19, 20, 46

H K Haas, G.E., 101, 111, 114 Habermas, J., 20, 46, 142, 143-145, 162 Hales, P.B., 54, 69 Hamilton, J.D., 51, 51, 60, 68, 69, 75, 96 Harding, S.G., 53, 69 Hartnett, S.J., 59, 72 Hasian, M.A., 75, 76, 96 Harvey, M., 137, 162 Hattam, J., 14, 16 Hays, D., 152, 157, 162 Hauptmann, E., 19, 20, 46 Hedin, J., 152, 162 Heidegger, M., 55, 63, 67, 69 Heisenberg, W., 65, 69 Helvarg, D., 12, 16 Hendee, J., 23, 46 Hendry, J., 51, 69 Hermann, S.M., 101, 113 Hesseln, H., 101, 113 Hilgartner, S., 65, 69 Hines, B., 25, 47 Holbert, R.L., 24, 47 Holbrook, M.B., 112, 114 Hopey, D., 3, 4, 16 Horowitz, E.M., 24, 47 Hu, H., 52, 62, 70 Hubbard, B., 65, 69, 75, 76 , 96 Huberman, A.M., 104, 114 Huffington, A., 116, 130

I Ingalsbee, T., 10, 16 Ivie, R.L., 43, 46

Katz, S.B., 19, 28, 42. 46 Kauffman, C., 75, 96 Kaufman, G.D., 66, 70 Kendall, P.L., 103, 114 Killingsworth, J., 44, 46 Kinsella, W.J., 50, 50, 52, 53, 55, 57, 59, 60, 60, 62, 70, 72, 75, 76, 96 Kitcher, P., 54, 70 Klare, M., 60, 70 Kotler, P., 102, 114 Kreuzwieser, M., 27, 46 Krimsky, S., 20, 46 Krueger, G., 25, 26, 40, 41, 46 Krueger, R.A., 103, 114 Kuletz, V.L., 52, 70 Kurtz, L.R., 55, 70 Kushner, H.A., 50, 70 Kuypers, M., 101, 112

L Lange, J.I., 24, 47 Latour, B., 79, 96 Leiss, W., 55, 70 Lewis, T.A., 2, 4, 16 Lifton, R.J., 61, 70 Lilienthal, D.E., 54, 70 Limerick, P.N., 52, 70 Lindee, M.S., 76, 96 Lindsay, S.A., 63, 65, 70 Ling, D.A., 80, 96 Loken, B., 102, 114 Lombardo, A., 51, 68

166 Long, K., 12, 16 Lovrich, N.P., 52, 60, 68 Lucaites, J.L., 20, 27, 45 Lucas, R., 23, 46

M Makhijani, A., 52, 62, 70 Malafarina, K., 102, 114 Manfredo, M.J., 101, 111, 114 Mansbridge, J.J., 19, 22, 24, 42, 43, 47 Marsh, E., 20, 33, 42, 45 Marynowski, S., 99, 101, 111, 113 Martin, D., 118, 130 Martin, R.E., 99, 114 Masco, J., 60, 61, 62, 63, 70, 71 Mathur, P., 50, 71 Mattson, K., 20, 22, 24, 42, 44 Maughan, R., 2, 4, 8, 16 McCombs, M., 23-24, 47 McGee, M.C., 27, 47 McGovern, M.H., 60, 71 McKibben, J., 55, 59, 71 McLeod, J., 24, 47 Mechling, E.W., 56, 66, 71, 75, 96 Mechling, J., 56, 66, 71, 75, 96 Medhurst, M.J., 75, 96 Mehan, H., 75, 96 Meister, M., 116, 130 Mendelberg, R., 20, 22, 24, 27, 47 Mencimer, S., 128, 130 Merchant, C., 55, 59, 71, 118, 131 Merton, R.K., 103, 114 Metzler, M.S., 50, 51, 59, 60, 62, 71, 72, 76, 96 Mickunas, A., 57, 71 Miles, M.B., 104, 114 Miller, C.R., 19, 28, 42, 46 Mlay, M., 19, 23, 46 Monroe, M.C., 99, 101, 111, 113 Morland, H., 61, 71 Morgan, D., 103, 114 Morgan, D.L., 103, 114 Moss, R.W., 82, 96 Moy, P., 24, 47 Muir, S.A., 5, 17 Murdock, B.S., 20, 47 Murphy, J.M., 3, 17

AUTHOR INDEX Myers, R.L., 100, 101, 113, 114

N Nadel, A., 55, 58, 71, 76, 96 Nathan, R., 146, 148, 162 Nathanson, C.E., 75, 96 Nilson, D., 2, 8 , 16 Nordland, R., 153, 155, 162 Norris, C., 51, 57, 71 Norris, R.S., 81, 95

O O?Connor, R., 65, 69 Oelshlaeger, M., 20, 44, 44 Olbrechts-Tyteca, L., 20, 44, 80, 96 Oleske, J., 20, 22, 24, 27, 47 Olsen, R.K., Jr., 116, 131 Olson, K., 12, 17 Omi, P.N., 100, 101, 113 O?Neill, B., 106, 131 Oravec, C., 136, 162

P Pace, D., 40, 47 Page, B.I., 43, 44, 47 Palmer, J.S., 44, 46 Pastor, S.K., 93, 95 Perelman, C., 80, 96 Pierce, J.C., 52, 60, 68 Pilotta, J.J., 57, 71 Plumwood, V., 118, 119, 123, 126, 127, 131 Porter, E., 137, 162 Probst, K.N., 60, 71 Prosise, T.O., 75, 76, 96 Pyne, S.J., 101, 114

R Ramos, T., 4, 17 Ratliff, J.N., 60, 71, 75, 76, 96 Renn, O., 19, 47 Reynolds, A., 24, 47 Rhodes, R., 49, 54, 71 Richardson, H.S., 22, 47 Risen, J., 62, 62, 71

AUTHOR INDEX Robbins, L.E., 101, 114 Rogers, R.A., 55, 71 Rosenthal, P., 54, 66, 71 Rouse, J., 50, 71 Roush, D., 51, 71 Roy, R., 99, 114 Russell, P., 25, 47 Rutherford, E., 49, 71 Ruthven, K., 49, 50, 51, 52, 54, 72

S Sale, K., 1, 7, 17 Scherer, C.W., 19, 20, 46 Schell, J., 53, 66, 72 Scheufele, D.A., 24, 47, 47 Schiappa, E., 75, 96 Schlosberg, D., 14, 15, 17 Schmitt, B., 26, 47 Schrodinger, E., 54, 72 Schwarze, S., 29, 33, 43, 47 Seabrook, C., 25, 26, 41, 47, 48 Sechler, B., 27, 48 Seifert, M., 19, 48 Senecah, S., 44, 48 Sellars, R.W., 9, 17 Sexton, K., 20, 47 Shade, H., 41, 48 Shamdasani, P.N., 102, 114 Shils, E., 61, 72 Shultz, C., 112, 114 Sider, R., 116, 120, 121, 123, 124, 126, 127, 131 Skelly, J.M., 75, 96 Smith, A.A., 10, 17, 149, 150, 152, 155, 156, 162 Snow, D., 2, 17 Soddy, F., 49, 72 Spragens, T., 23, 48 Spyke, N.P., 20, 23, 48 Staed, T., 23, 46 Stankey, G., 23, 46 Stapleton, R., 4, 17 Strauss, A.L., 103, 104, 113, 114 Stearney, L.M., 42, 48 Stenberg, K.J., 101, 113 Stewart, C.J., 10, 17, 149, 150, 152, 155, 156, 162

167 Stewart, D., 102, 114 Streng, D.R., 101, 113 Switzer, J.V., 2, 4, 5, 17

T Tangley, L., 100, 114 Taylor, B.C., 50, 50, 52, 52, 59, 60, 60, 61, 62, 63, 72, 74, 75, 76, 96 Taylor, J.G., 101, 111, 113, 114 Traweek, S., 53, 72 Thompson, D., 19, 22, 46 Teilhard de Chardin, P., 66, 72 Teller, E., 56, 72 Toker, B., 128, 131 Tonn, M.B., 80, 97 Tourmey, C.P., 53, 72 Tracy, R., 23, 46 Traweek, S., 53, 72

U Udall, S.L., 12, 17 Urbinati, N., 44, 48

V Van Hook, T., 101, 113 Vaughan, E., 19, 48 Veiluva, M., 81, 97

W Waddell, C., 20, 42, 48 Walker, G.B., 20, 43, 45 Walker, J.L., 101, 113 Waldrop, T.A., 100, 114 Warrick, J., 2, 17 Watson, A.E., 101, 111, 114 Weart, S., 54, 66, 72 Weber, M., 144, 162 Weeks, E.C., 23, 24, 48 Weiner, J.L., 112, 69 Weiner, T., 62, 72 Wells, H.G., 49, 72 Werkmeister, O.K., 60, 72 White, D.L., 100, 114 Whiteley, J.M., 52, 60, 68

168 Whitson, J.B., 101, 112 White, L., Jr., 118, 131 Widaman, K.F., 101, 111, 113 Williams, D., 40, 48 Williams, D.C., 58, 65, 72 Wills, J., 75, 96 Winkler, A.M., 54, 66, 72 Winner, L., 65, 72 Winter, G., 100, 101, 111, 113, 114 Wondolleck, J.M., 23, 45 Wooton, S., 26, 48 Wood, J.L., 152, 162

AUTHOR INDEX

Y Yih, K., 52, 62, 70

Z Zaltman, G., 102, 114 Zhang, W., 24, 47 Zubric, J., 24, 47 Zubric, S., 24, 47 Zwolinski, M.J., 101, 111, 113

Subject Index

A Advertisements, see SUV, promotion of Anti-SUV, see SUV

B Backgrounding, 124, see also dualisms Brower, David, 137–138 Bureau of Reclamation, 137–138 Bush, Jr., President George W., 14

C Campaigns, see also Fernald case, Hetch Hetchy, narratives, prescribed burns, public involvement, social marking, Tocks Island Dam Campaign competing appeals, 88–91 mass media, roles of, 85–86 message development, 108–111 Cancer Treatment, 81, see also Fernald case, hazardous waste, nuclear, radium Circumference, 79–80, see also narrative Clean Air Act, 2, see also Wise Use Movement Clinton Laboratories, 82 Coalitions, 77, 79 Coding, see methodology Cold War, see Fernald case, hazardous waste, nuclear discourse, US Department of Energy

Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act, see Superfund Consensus, 22, 23, 29, 33, 39, 42, see also deliberative democracy, public involvement, StakeholderEvaluation Group Consumerism, 127 Cooptation, 5–10, 20, 28, see also Stakeholder Evaluation Group

D Deep ecology, 124 Delaware River, 139–140, see also Tocks Island Dam Campaign Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area, 133 Detroit Project, 116 Dinosaur National Monument, 137 Discourse, see narrative, nuclear discourse, Stakeholder Evaluation Group, Tocks Island Dam campaign, Wise Use Movement Dualisms, 123–129, 124, see also backgrounding, homogenization, incorporation, instrumentalism, radical exclusion analysis tool, 123–124

E Earth Day, 1, 150, see also environmental movement 169

170 Echo Park, 137 Environmental conflict, 74, see also campaigns, circumference, narrative, Tocks Island Dam campaign development of, 74, 79 situation definition, 80 Environmental discourse, 5 environmental movement, 1, see also Wise Use Movement counter tactics against Wise Use Movement, 3–4 Ecofeminism, 118 Ecotheology, 119 Evangelical Environmental Network, 116, see also Jesus

F Fernald case, 73, 74, 80, see also campaigns, hazardous waste, narrative, radium background, 81–84 proposal to extract radium, 83 radium controversy, 83–94 Focus groups, see Methodology

G Georgia Port Authority, see Public Involvement, Stakeholder Evaluation Group Glen Canyon, 137, 138 Grand Canyon, 137–138

H Hazardous waste, see also Fernald case, radium cleanup, 74 medical uses, 74, 81 radon, 81 Hetch Hetchy, 136 Homogenization, 124, 127, 128, see also dualism

I Ideograph, 27–28, 33, 39, see also narrative

SUBJECT INDEX Identification frames, 120–123 comedic/heroic, 120, 123, 124 humorous, 120–121, 124 Incorporation, 124, 127, 128, see also dualisms Instrumentalism, 124, 127, 128, see also dualism Interview guide, see methodology

J Jesus campaign, “What Would Jesus Drive?”, 116, 122–24, see also dualisms impact of, 116, 129 pledge, 117 rhetorical appeals, 124, see also worldviews, humannature dualism; radical exclusion website, 123 interpretive lenses, 119–120, see also identification frames great physician, as, 124–125 secular, 119 sacred, 120, 124

L Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, 76 Legitimacy, 142–145 Logic of colonization, 123, 126, 129, see also dualisms challenge to human-nature dualism, 124 Los Alamos National Laboratory, 62, 76

M Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, 81 Methodology, see also dualisms coding, 103–104 focus groups, 102–104 interview guide, 103 sampling, purposive, 103

SUBJECT INDEX semi-narrative analysis, 73, 74, 76, 77, 80, 93, 94 semiotic analysis, 73 Muir, John, 136, see also Hetch Hetchy

N Narrative, 73-74, 76 see also Fernald case circumference, 79, 87, 90, 91, 93 exclusion, 74, 79, 80–81, 87, 91, 93 inclusion, 74, 79, 80–81, 91, 93 competing, 74, 90 construction of, 74, 77, 79, 87 process of, 77 functions, 73, 74 conflict resolution, 74 cultural dialogue, 76 influence, 74 understanding, 73 ideograph, 27, see also Narrative, public vocabulary interpretation of, 74 mobilization phases, 77 competence, 77–79, 85 association, 78, 79 dissociation, 78, 79 manipulation, 77 performance, 77 sanction, 77, 92 patterns, 77 public vocabulary, 26–28 semi-narrative framework, see also Methodology social controversies, as, 73 see also Tocks Island Dam Campaign National Environmental Policy Act, 19, 150, see also public involvement National Nuclear Security Administration, 62 Norton, Gale, 14 Not-in-my-backyard, 93 Nuclear Discourse, 49–52, see also Fernald case, narrative, nuclear energy connections to Power/knowledge, 52, 57, 61, 62 debate, 75 containment, 76 symbols, 75

171 implications for environmental communication, 50 master themes, 51 mystery, 51, 52-54, 67 cognitive boundaries, 53 desire to control, 55 nuclear priesthood, 54 entelechy, 51, 63–67 symbolic perfection, 64–65 potency, 51, 56–60, 67 secrecy, 51, 60–63, 67 Nuclear materials, 82, see also Fernald case, hazardous waste, narrative, radium, rival stories Nuclear Priesthood, see nuclear discourse

P Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, 82 Pinchot, Gifford, see Hetch Hetchy Prescribed burns, 100 benefits, ecological, 100 issues with, 104–108 research on, 101 Public Involvement, 19, 42–44, 87, 110, see also campaigns, mass media deliberative democracy, 19, 21 critiques of, 23–24 myth of group process, 30–34, 36–39 principles of, 22, 36 docile citizenship, 63,see also nuclear discourse lack of, 61 lawsuits, 81, see also legitimacy, narratives, nuclear discourse, Stakeholder Evaluation Group, Tocks Island Dam campaign Openness Initiative, 62 public policy, 110 traditional process, 19

R Radical exclusion, 124, 125, 128, see also dualisms Radium, 73–74

172 cancer treatment potential, 81 Radon, see Hazardous waste Reagan, President Ronald, 2, 14, see also Sagebrush Rebellion, Wise Use Movement Risks, see prescribed burns, Stakeholder Evaluation Group Rival stories, 75, see also narrative, nuclear debate

S Sagebrush Rebellion, 2, 14, see also Environmental Movement, President Ronald Reagan, Wise Use Movement Sampling, see methodology Savannah River, see Stakeholder Evaluation Group Semi-narrative analysis, see methodology Semiotic analysis, see methodology Sierra Club, 5, 6, 14, 137, see also Wise Use Movement Social change, see Social marketing Social Marketing, 102, 111, see also campaigns examples, 102 usefulness for behavior change, 111–112 Social movements, 13 Sports Utility Vehicle, see SUV Stakeholder Evaluation Group, 20, see also cooptation, public involvement cooptation, 20, 28 confusing the issues, 36–39 controlling agency legitimacy, 33–36 controlling process, 29–33, controlling vocabulary, 35, 36, 39–40, 42 environmental concerns, 26–27 history, 20, 25–27 Stereotyping, see Homogenization Superfund, 81, see also Fernald case, hazardous waste SUV Anti-SUV campaign, 116, see also Jesus, campaigns concerns about, 116

SUBJECT INDEX criticisms of, environmental, 115 popularity of, 115 promotion of, 115–116 religious overtones, 116 stereotyping, negative, 128

T Tocks Island Dam Campaign, see also campaigns, legitimacy building legitimacy coactive strategies, 150–154 traditional rights and values, 150–151 transcendence, 154 using legitimizers, 152–154 confrontation strategies, 155–160 history, 138–140 opposition appeals, 148–150 Save Sunfish Pond, implications of, 141–142 supporting appeals, 145–148 Trinity of voice, 44, see also legitimacy, public involvement, Stakeholder Evaluation Group Trust, 88, see also public involvement; Stakeholder Evaluation Group

U U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, 26, 40, 41 U.S. Department of Commerce, 40 U.S. Department of Energy, 62, 73, 81, 82, 85, 92, see also Fernald case, narrative, nuclear discourse, openness initiative U.S. Department of Interior, 40 U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 23, 26, 40 U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 26, 40

W Water Resources Development Act, 40 Watt, James, 2, 14, see also Sagebrush Rebellion, Wise Use Movement What Would Jesus Drive? see Jesus, Campaign, SUV

SUBJECT INDEX Wildfires, 99 benefits, ecological, 100 causes, 100 control, see prescribed burns consequences, 100 suppression, 100 Wise Use Movement, 1–13, see also environmental movement, Reagan, Sagebrush Rebellion appropriation of discourse, 3, 5 aggressive mimicry of identity, 5, 10–13

173 co-optation of language, 5–10 mimicry of structure, 5, 6–8 origins, 5–6 Worldviews, 118, 119, see also deep ecology, ecofeminism, ecotheology, rival stories human-nature dualism, 57, 59, 117, 124

Y Yosemite National Park, see Hetch Hetchy