Religion & Nature

IC Library Print & Media Resources

Selected Subject Searches

(Click to run targeted Subject searches in the IC Library catalog)

Natural Supernaturalism

Nature--Religious aspects
Nature--Religious aspects--Christianity
Nature--Religious aspects--Judaism
Nature--Religious aspects--Islam
Nature--Religious aspects--Hinduism
Nature--Religious aspects--Buddhism
Indians of North America--Religion
Indians of North America--Ethnobotany
     Also see my guide for Native Americans
Rastafari movement
Hallucinogenic drugs and religious experience
Philosophy of nature
Natural theology
Wilderness (Theology)
Animals--Religious aspects
Speciesism--Religious aspects
Nature worship--United States--History
Neopaganism--United States
Goddess religion
Transcendentalism (New England)
Sacred space
Religion and geography

Conservation and Conscience
Nature--Effect of human beings on
Nature conservation--Religious aspects
Nature conservation--Philosophy
Ecology--Religious aspects
Ecology--Religious aspects--Buddhism
Ecology--Religious aspects--Christianity
Ecology--Moral and ethical aspects
Human ecology--Religious aspects
Human ecology--Religious aspects--Christianity
Stewardship, Christian
Human ecology--Religious aspects--Judaism
Human ecology--Religious aspects--Islam
Human ecology--Religious aspects--Hinduism
Human ecology--Religious aspects--Buddhism
Human ecology--Religious aspects--Zen Buddhism
Deep ecology--Religious aspects
Gaia hypothesis
Environmentalism--Religious aspects
Environmentalism--Religious aspects--Christianity
Environmental ethics
Environmental protection--Moral and ethical aspects
Environmental responsibility
Environmental policy--Moral and ethical aspects
Environmental justice--Religious aspects--Christianity
Environmental degradation--Religious aspects
Environmental sciences--Philosophy
Green movement
Green Revolution
Sustainable development
Sustainable living

Two Different Worlds?
Religion and science
Religion and science 1946-
Physics--Religious aspects--Buddhism
Astronomy--Religious aspects--Catholic Church
Astronomy--Religious aspects--Hinduism
Astronomy--Religious aspects--Hinduism
Bioethics--Religious aspects
Bioethics--Religious aspects--Catholic Church
Bioethics--Religious aspects--Islam
Bioethics--Religious aspects--Judaism
Genetic engineering--Moral and ethical aspects
Genetic engineering--Religious aspects--Christianity
Medical genetics--Moral and ethical aspects
Medical genetics--Religious aspects
Biotechnology--Moral and ethical aspects
Biotechnology--Religious aspects
Plant genetic engineering
Transgenic plants
Crops--Genetic engineering--Environmental aspects
Genetically modified foods
Bible and science
Creation--Comparative studies
Bible. O.T. Genesis--Criticism, interpretation, etc
Big bang theory
Evolution (Biology)--Religious aspects
Evolution (Biology)--Religious aspects--Christianity
Bible and evolution
Intelligent design (Teleology)
Naturalism--Religious aspects
End of the world
End of the world--Biblical teaching
Apocalyptic literature

Empire of Mammon
Capitalism--Environmental aspects
Capitalism--Religious aspects--Christianity
Capitalism--Religious aspects--Islam
Economic development--Religious aspects
Economic development--Religious aspects--Buddhism
Economic development--Religious aspects--Islam
Business enterprises--Environmental aspects
Corporations--Environmental aspects
Corporations--Religious aspects
Agriculture--Environmental aspects
Agriculture--Environmental aspects--United States
International business enterprises--Environmental aspects
Globalization--Environmental aspects
Globalization--Religious aspects
Global environmental change
Environmental economics
Environmental protection--Economic aspects
Consumption (Economics)--Moral and ethical aspects

IC Library Databases (Articles)

Articles: Gauging the Slant

     Religion and Environmentalism can both inspire highly polarized public policy debates, so remember that magazines are more likely than either scholarly journals or newspapers to have distinct political affiliations, of which you should be aware to critically evaluate your sources. Below are some broad categorizations of my own:
Liberal journals include Mother Jones, Village Voice, The Nation, The Progressive, Washington Monthly, Utne Reader, Tikkum, Dissent, American Prospect, New York Review of Books, New Leader, Rolling Stone, Z Magazine, New Statesman (British), Guardian Weekly (British).

Conservative journals include American Spectator, National Review, Weekly Standard, American Enterprise, Commentary, American Outlook, Policy Review and The Spectator (British).

And if you don’t believe me, take a look at Yahoo’s lists of “conservative” and “progressive” magazines.

Recommended Databases

     ATLA religion database with ATLASerials : Our discipline-specific database for religion research.  Setting       search limits on the home page is a good idea if you are looking specifically for journal articles (under "publication type" select "article" to eliminate books and essays in books, which will not be available full text) or if you read only English (under Language select "English" to eliminate retrievals in other languages).
     Subject searching is available--just open the "Select a Field" drop-down menu to the right of the search slots.  And you can preview the Subject Headings available here by clicking on "Indexes" above the search slots and selecting "Subjects All."  Not only will this allow you to confirm Subject Headings, but for each one you will be given a "count" of how many records have been assigned it, so you can see in advance where the greatest number of resources are available for your topic.  There are many religiously-oriented articles here on Subjects such as Environmental Ethics, Environmental Studies, Ecology, and of course Ecology--Religious aspects.
     Special Feature: Above the search slots note "Scriptures."  This refers to only the Judeo-Christian scriptures contained in the Bible (no Apocrypha), but it does allow you easily to search for articles by chapter and verse for each book of the Bible. 
     General OneFile : is the most user-friendly of our comprehensive databases, covering almost any topic from a wide range of disciplinary angles and offering lots of full text.  Use the default Subject search to find the best subject heading for your topic (and when you find a good one be sure to look at the "Related Subjects" to see if there's something even better).
     After finding the best Subject term, use the “Subdivisions” link below it for focus.  These allow you to target articles on a particular aspect of the topic, including "Environmental aspects," “Ethical Aspects,” “Political Aspects,” "Religious Aspects," and “Social Aspects.”
      If the best available subdivision is still too broad, open it and add your own Keywords in the "Search within these results" slot at the upper left.
     User Advisory: When first viewing your retrievals in General OneFile, note that you are seeing onlythe "Magazines" (popular articles) and must click on the tabs for "Academic Journals" (scholarly articles) or "News" (newspaper articles) to see those results. 

     ProQuest Research Library : is another comprehensive database with substantial full text.  Use the "Thesaurus" (above the search slots) to preview what Subject Headings are available.  Subect searching can be a more efficient way to search than with only Keywords, since it guarantees that the articles retrieved actually be about the Subject--not just use a particular word. 
     Among the Subjects available here are Religion, Religion & Politics, Religious Fundamentalism, and Religious Issues, as well as Environmental Philosophy, Environmental Ethics, Environmental Policy, and Environmental Protection.  Combining, for instance, Religion and Environmental Ethics might be a good place to start.
    Note that to the right of your search results you can limit your retrieval by "Source Type" (including Magazines, Newspapers, Scholarly Journals),  "Document Type," (including Cover Story, Editorial, or Interview), "Document Feature" (including Photographs, Illustrations), and "Location."
     Above each set of articles you retrieve ProQuest will display related Subject searches to help either broaden or narrow your focus.
     User Advisory: ProQuest is fussy about entering Subject searches in the designated search slot. If your subject is a person, enter the name--last name first--in the "Person" slot; if a named group of any kind--Microsoft, the Catholic Church, Radiohead, the New York Mets--enter it in "Co/Org"; if a place enter it in "Location." 
     Academic Search Premier : Like General OneFile and Proquest, a large comprehensive database with ample full text.  Note that you can browse the "Subject Terms" (above the search slots) and once you find a likely Subject Heading for your topic you can "explode" (double click) it for a list of related Subject terms.  For a general sampling of articles try combining Environmental Protection with Religious aspects--both as Subjects--or for Environmental Protection substitute Nature.  Also note that with each retrieval set there is a "Geography" button on the left where you can narrow the results by country--for instance, the United States--as well as "Source Types" where you can choose to view only the "academic" (scholarly) journal articles.

     GreenFILE &  SocINDEX with Full Text : As the names imply, good databases for environmental issues and their social ramifications. Click on the "Subject Terms" link above the search slots to find which Subject Headings will work here.  For instance, in GreenFile you can use Environmentalism--Religious Aspects, Environmental Protection--Religious Aspects, or Environmental Responsibility--Religious Aspects.  In SocINDEX  try Ecology with Religion or with the name of a particular religion.

      JSTOR : covers a wide range of scholarly journals in most disciplines, always beginning with the first issue of each one.  This provides (almost) 100% full text of journals from the first half of the twentieth century and the second half of the nineteenth. 
     JSTOR offers only a Keyword search of its complete full text, so retrievals are large, but the relevancy ranking does a good job of putting the strongest matches on the first few pages.  This relevancy ranking does not weigh date, however, and will display a mix of articles written decades apart.  So if your topic is time sensitive, be alert to publication dates.
     For a good overview of articles relevant to Religion and Ecology, start off with a search on: religio* and (environment* or ecolog*).  Note: the asterisk (*) is the truncation symbol here--standing in for any ending on the root to which it's added.  For example, religio* retrieves religious, religion, and religions. 
     User Advisory: The academic journals covered here feature numerous book reviews, so it's a good idea to tick the "Article" limit below the search slots so you won't be overwhelmed by book reviews on your topic.  
     Also note the "Date Range" limit, which in a database with an archive this deep can be very useful.    

    Project Muse , although a smaller database, it complements JSTOR. LIke JSTOR it provides 100% full text of mostly scholarly journals, but its coverage is entirely current--mainly spanning the last 10-15 years.  Muse uses a "black box" search approach--you enter your search terms in one slot with no designated field options--but in addition to slapping in keywords, you can use the same Library of Congress Subject Headings that work in the Library catalog (see above under "Subject Searches").  This broad approach to searching tends to generate large retrievals, so it's best to be as specific as possible.  And note--once you have a retrieval set, you can add more search terms by clicking "Modify Search" at the top.

      Philosopher's Index : No full text, but the “ArticleLinker” arrows at the end of each citation will connect to scholarly full text in our other databases--making this an efficient one-stop search for philosophical and, more specifically, ethical approaches to Religion and Ecology.  Subject headings are called Descriptors here.  For a preliminary overview of the range of articles available, try entering Environmentalism or Ecology or Nature as one Descriptor search with Religion as a Descriptor in the slot below and finally in the bottom slot choose NOT as the connector and enter Human as a Descriptor (Nature in the top slot will otherwise also retrieve the Descriptor "Human Nature" and your results will lose some focus).
     User Advisory: If you are only looking for journal articles in English, it's a good idea to tick those boxes just below the search slots.

      ScienceDirect : Because it’s a large database with a great deal of full text, the absence of Subject searching means that your Keyword searches will often retrieve large sets of articles, many of which mention but don’t discuss your search term(s). One way around this is to limit your initial search to the “Abstract Title Keyword” field. Once you have found an article that sounds on-target, click the “Related Articles” link beneath the citation. This will open a range of articles on the same topic.  
     Note: Because this is Keyword searching, you will sometimes need to use truncation.  The truncation symbol here is the asterisk: *  So, for example, religio* retrieves religious, religion, and religions.
     Also note: The default date range is 10 years, but you can choose any date range you wish.
     Also also note: it's a good idea to uncheck the "All books" box below the search slots, if you are in fact looking for articles. 

Contact Us

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Lisabeth Chabot

College Librarian
(607) 274-3182

Search Argos

Related Research Guides

     For Religion see my Subject Guide for Religion and my Topic guides for Islam, Hinduism, Jewish Studies, Religion, Science and Cosmology, Facing Nature,
Wilderness in the Western Mind, and Rites, Rituals & Life Passages.  For Ecology see my Topic Guides for Environmental IssuesAgriculture & Food, and Bioethics.
     John Henderson maintains a Subject Guide for Sustainability and Ron Gilmour has one for Environmental Science.

Reference Resources

Web Resources

Web Directories

     Web Directories differ from search engines like Google in that all the online resources have been selected and annotated by editors, thereby promising a much higher degree of quality control.  Two of the largest provide collections of Web resources for Religion and Science:

Web Search Engines

  Google Advanced Search: When doing research on the Web, always use the Adanced Search version of Google. This not only provides more flexibility in entering search terms, but more importantly it allows you to target the Web domains that are likely to provide the most authoritative information.
     Under "Need More Tools?" you will find the "Search within a site or domain" slot. You may enter only one domain at a time, but it's worth targeting each of the three domains likely to supply the best information: colleges and universities (enter the "edu" tag), nonprofit organizations (enter the "org" tag), and the United States government (enter the "gov" tag).

Selected Web Sites

  • Overview of World Religions and Ecology: Part of the Forum on Religion and Ecology, hosted by the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies, navigate by using the index of religions on the left.  And note: when you click on a religion you will first access an overview, but there is much additional material available in the sub-sections that will appear on the right, for example, Bibliography, Sacred Texts, Projects, and Links. 
  • Religion and Environment Links: Grab bag of resources from Dr. Janice Anderson (Philosophy, U. Idaho).  Note the links specific to Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, and Native Americans.
  • Theology Library: Environment: Documents, Statements: A wealth of online materials at this Spring Hill College site.  Scroll down to "Articles, Papers" and just keep going.  The emphasis is Christian (this is a Jesuit school), but other faiths are represented here.
  • Web of Creation: from the Lutheran School of Theology at the University of Chicago, this site is valuable for its "Links to Eco-Faith Groups" (Christian) and also take a look at the materials under "Home of the Green Congregation Program" at the top.
  • Eco-Justice Programs: from the National Council of the Churches of Christ.  Scroll through the range of free, full-text publications under Resources (and note that to download the full text you must register--free).
  • National Religious Partnership for the Environment: An interesting Christian, Jewish, and Evangelical collaboration.  Open "issues" and by clicking on an environmental topic you will bring up an overview with links to Jewish, Catholic, Mainline Protestant, and Evangelical "perspectives." 
  • Hindu Faith Statement: from the Alliance of Religions and Conservation site (see above), this is probably the best Web collection on Hinduism and the environment.

Citation Help

MLA Citation

MLA is the citation style used by most disciplines in the Humanities. Here is my guide to the latest (2016) update of the MLA style.