The Environmental Philosopher
How TWU’s MAIH helped a humanities major pave a new career as an environmental philosopher
ANNA BERESFORD MA (’17) DIDN’T CHOOSE ENVIRONMENTAL philosophy—the study of the moral relationships of human beings to the environment and its non-human contents. It chose her. In fact, when the English and philosophy major first applied to the Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Humanities (maih) program at Trinity Western University, her study aspirations leaned far more classical.
“I was interested in ancient Roman plays,” she laughs. For Beresford, it was twu’s faculty coupled with the interdisciplinary aspect of the program (students can choose to concentrate in either English, philosophy, or history, but broadly study all three) that allowed her to explore this non-traditional subject. “It’s hard to separate them,” says Beresford. “The faculty at twu are so passionate about what they do and have a strong love of truth. This gave me the ability to think outside the box when choosing my thesis.”
Recently, Beresford was “surprised and humbled” to be accepted to the School of Environment, Resources and Sustainability at the University of Waterloo, where she will pursue her doctorate degree under Dr. Stephen Quilley. She was also awarded a $100,000 grant over four years to study the subject she loves.
As for the end goal, Beresford says she would love to work in academia but ultimately wants to research ways in which humans can live in balance with nature. “I don’t believe humans are inherently selfish or greedy,” she says. “We’re also not separate from nature. This is our home, too. We should be able to live in it. Our God, who is the source of all that is good, put us here-and it wasn’t by accident.”
For more information on the MAIH program, visit twu.ca/maih