The formative sphere is the sum of activity encompassing the creation, questioning, and development of principles for collective action. This sphere gives shape to the meaning of the Anthropocene and how its implications are taken up in collective decision-making. An effective formative sphere should operate as a deliberative and ecological democracy capable of questioning its own foundations. This chapter shows how the formative sphere can operate in interactions between experts and citizens, between the most vulnerable and their advocates, between advocates and discourse entrepreneurs, across local experiments, and across the human and non-human components of the Earth system. Contemplation of Anthropocene conditions shows that in addition to established arguments for ecological democracy, there is a new argument: the agents necessary to rethink core social values and principles to guide practice for the Anthropocene can only flourish under democratic conditions. Democracy itself is transformed in this new encounter.
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