Is it time to embrace the so-called "Anthropocene"--the age of human dominion--and to abandon tried-and-true conservation tools such as parks and wilderness areas? Is the future of Earth to be fully domesticated, an engineered global garden managed by technocrats to serve humanity? The schism between advocates of rewilding and those who accept and and even celebrate a "post-wild" world is arguably the hottest intellectual battle in contemporary conservation.
George Wuerthner is the ecological projects director for the Foundation for Deep Ecology, where he does research and writes about environmental issues. For many years he was a full-time freelance photographer and writer and has published thirty-five books on natural history, conservation history, ecology, and environmental issues. Eileen Crist teaches at Virginia Tech in the Department of Science and Technology in Society, where she is advisor for the undergraduate program Humanities, Science, and Environment. She is author of "Images of Animals: Anthropomorphism" and "Animal Mind" and coeditor of "Gaia in Turmoil: Climate Change, Biodepletion, and Earth Ethics in an Age of Crisis." Tom Butler, a Vermont-based conservation activist and writer, is the board president of the Northeast Wilderness Trust and the former longtime editor of Wild Earth journal. His books include "Wildlands Philanthropy, Plundering Appalachia," and "ENERGY: Overdevelopment and the Delusion of Endless Growth."