<strong>Mary Evelyn Tucker</strong> image

Mary Evelyn Tucker is co-director of the Forum on Religion and Ecology at Yale University, where she teaches in the joint MA program between the School of Forestry & Environmental Studies and the Divinity School. Her concern for the growing environmental crisis led her to organize with John Grim a series of ten conferences on World Religions and Ecology. They are series editors for the ten resulting volumes distributed by Harvard University Press and co-authors of Ecology and Religion (Island Press, 2014). With Brian Swimme she wrote Journey of the Universe (Yale, 2011) and is the executive director of the Emmy award-winning film that aired on PBS. She served on the International Earth Charter Drafting Committee and was a member of the Earth Charter International Council.

Featured Writings and Talks

Journey of the Universe Yale University PressEcology and Religion Island PressMary Evelyn Tucker Profile Yale School of Forestry and Environmental StudiesTED X Journey of the Universe TEDx TalksMary Evelyn Tucker Multimedia Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies

Mary Evelyn Tucker on...

The role of collective action:

"The individual sphere is, I think, being almost suffocated by hyper-consumption and hyper-individualism. We yearn to be part of something larger, and called to something larger."

Moral call:

"There is a complex multi-faceted moral call at this moment in human history that needs to draw on other cultures, other religions, other peoples and races and so on, to build what I would call a multicultural, but planetary civilization, for the future. I think we can do that."

A burgeoning environmental ethics:

"We're in this exciting moment of expansion of an ethical and moral sensibility that's grounded in the science that gives us that sense of the intricacy of ecosystems."

What we can learn from Confucianism:

"The idea of Confucianism is, even the [Chinese] character for the individuals is 'an individual in relationship' to others. And the idea, even for public service, is you're doing this for the common good. It's a completely different way of being human in the world."

The limits of technology:

"I think technology as a solution alone is a misplaced notion, but especially without a precautionary principle. What are the implications for these technologies that we're releasing?"


"We are going through some historical moment that is unique, let's just say, and very pressing, and very confusing. And I think we need, probably, plural moral visions to come through this, for sure. We need that from scientists. We need it from entrepreneurs. We need it from people in urban communities, and so on."

Religion and environmentalism:

"So, the huge movement of Laudato si, "care for our common home" [the pope's encyclical on climate change] is to say, people and planets are integrated and that clearly we have to have environmental justice at the core of this. Those who are suffering from climate change in coastal communities and elsewhere are the most vulnerable, people who haven't created the problem but are suffering from it."

The arts:

"The arts are, I think, going to be one of the greatest change agents that we have."


Secretary David J. Skorton, M.D. image

Dr. David J. Skorton is the 13th Secretary of the Smithsonian. Skorton, a board-certified cardiologist, previously was the president of Cornell University, a position he held from July 2006. He was also a professor in the Departments of Medicine and Pediatrics at Weill Cornell Medical College in New York City and in Cornell’s Department of Biomedical Engineering at the College of Engineering. An ardent and nationally recognized supporter of the arts and humanities, Skorton has called for a national dialogue to emphasize the importance of funding for these disciplines.

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Jedediah Purdy image
Jedediah Purdy

professor of law Duke University and the author of After Nature: A Politics for the Anthropocene

Catrina Rorke image
Catrina Rorke

senior fellow for energy policy, R Street Institute

Mary Evelyn Tucker image
Mary Evelyn Tucker

co-founder and co-director of the Forum on Religion and Ecology at Yale University