Start › Forums › Current Debates and Themes in Global Environmental History 2015 › Examinations of the course
|December 8, 2015 at 11:06 #17612|
|Ylva Lundkvist Fridh||
Current Themes and Debates in Global Environmental History:
The course will be examined with a final essay (maxim 5 pages) consisting of a diary of the lectures and associated reflections and your own reflection summarising the course. Note that grades will be based only on this final assignment.
To fulfill the requirements of the course you have attended/or submit complimentary tasks (se below) for at least 10 seminars. Also note which seminars you organised. In your final examination assignment:
Complementary tasks (if you have not attended 10 seminars)
|December 8, 2015 at 11:13 #17613|
|Ylva Lundkvist Fridh|
|December 29, 2015 at 20:17 #17614|
Current Debates in Environmental History – Final assignment
Reading: Hornborg, A. 2012. Global Ecology and Unequal Exchange: Fetishism in a Zero-Sum World. Routledge.
3. Carolyn Merchant (led with Mirabel Joshi) Science History, Ecology and the Idea of Nature
My reflection about the course
In April 2013, Harry Kreisler of the University of California Berkeley interviewed Professor William Cronon, a leading figure in environmental history, in order to discuss the life and work of an environmental historian. Cronon, a fascinating academic figure emphasised the importance of the narrative in history in which captivating the reader is paramount. A story can be narrated through many ways, Cronon emphasised, and each way can help us understand it differently. When Kreisler asked Cronon to summarise what environmental history is, the latter explained that environmental history is the narrative of the interactions between humans and nature, the history of nature but also of men’s ideas about it. Because environmental history can be told through many different ways, using different narratives, it is no surprise that it is subject to debate. Indeed, several versions of the same story may coexist.
II- Overthrowing dichotomies
III- Perceiving the world through a different lens
|January 4, 2016 at 17:22 #17619|
My Examination Essay
Ghide Habtetsion Gebremichael
|January 4, 2016 at 21:06 #17620|
Vincenza Ferrara´s Final Examination Assignment:
Thank you indeed!
|January 5, 2016 at 01:19 #17624|
My final examination: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B5DNLR1S1FTNUTdhOWZmc3poWWs/view?usp=sharing
|January 5, 2016 at 11:51 #17626|
|January 5, 2016 at 15:06 #17628|
A. LIST OF SEMINARS I HAVE ATTENDED
1. Governance of the artic:
In our common discussion, I talked about the social sense that the peoples give to themselves based on their knowledge and histories, which allow them to interpret their current context to take informed decisions for their futures. In this sense, the critic reflections around the lack of ecological or social sense from scientific investigations are demands from common people, which must be benefited by the advances of the science in the world. The conflicts between the scientific knowledge, in this case the historical reconstruction of the Viennese riverscape, and the people who living as inhabitants, has been well studied by scholars and they have founded those field called “civic science”.
3. From natural to cultural landscapes
According with H. Ernston through linking green areas and the mobilization of social actors was built a public recognition of the social capital of the artifacts produced by activists, artists and Scientifics such as maps, paintings and reports which supported the final approbation of the above mentioned law in the Swedish Parliament. Likewise, the concepts built by the core and periphery social actors regarding to the ecological, historical and national values of the Park were legal basis for the municipal authorities in the management of this protected area.
The dilemma identified by Ostrom, is that if access to common-pool resources is limited it excludes people from their free use, and if the access is not limited, the free enjoyment of people causes resource depletion. According to the school of collective action-which usually has studied the problem-the resolution of this dilemma is economic and has been shown by the successful experiences of the institutions that have been able to manage common-pool resources, by creating rules that have encouraged the proper use of these goods and punished their embezzlement. On the other hand, according to the entitlement scholars, the dilemma is moral and must be decided taking into account the inability of poor and vvulnerable groups to take advantage of the common-pool resources. Therefore, institutional solutions to this dilemma are sometimes contradictory to the contexts of socio-economic needs of the communities.
From a biological approach, the land have an self-system to cure himself and the only requirement to do it depend on strictly from the human will. When comes the day in that pre modern production and consumption, from indigenous and forestry societies, becomes again in the global rule, that day we will be in front of a new society way, in which the biodiversity and the respect for bioma are the environmental values.
8. Reviews in Global Environmental History
B. Seminars I have led: GOVERNANCE OF THE ARTIC
C. COMPLEMENTARY TASKS
|January 5, 2016 at 20:28 #17631|
|January 6, 2016 at 11:20 #17632|
Current Debates Course
The 10 seminars I have attended:
– World Systems, History and Ecology
– Nature, Narrative and Environmental History
– Governance and the Arctic
– Integrated History of People on Earth
– River History
– The Age of Ecology
My conclusion on the course
First of all, I found the course interesting. It highlighted different aspects of the climate debate today and somewhat what we can do about it. There are issues we can address today, and some which may be out of our reach to actually change for the better in the long term. My overall impression of the course is to try change our use of resources of different kinds, money and nature, in order to leave a better world to our descendence. The increasing problem started in the 1800 which the Industrial Revolution, unto the Silent Spring in the 1960s. The Revolution had to do with coal and the usage of coal, which has increased the climate change a lot. Silent Spring by Rachel Carson, wrote on the contemporary usage of pesticides and other toxins which were very damaging and sometimes deadly to nature and wild life. Joahcim Radkau, describes the origins of environmentalism and also mentions Carson.
Today, the situtation is more severe, although we have banned some pesticides etcetera used in the 1960s. Coal is still being used as enery resource in electricity world wide. We have also increased environmental toxins of different kinds, by producing large amounts of them used in plastics, fabrics, electronics and much more. We are depleting the ozone layer, causing imbalances of the temperature – such as warmer over all temperature – and increasing desease among animals and damaging vegetation due to toxins. Some experts consider us to think long term, in contrast to today´s thinking of short term thinking among most people. It is my conclusion that most of the author´s we came in contact with during this course thought this way. Not only did they think long term, but also that we actually can do something about this crisis.
We have caused it, and therefore there are habits we can change. We can change our view on nature and to use it with care. To be subordinate nature and let it teach us how much we are depended upon it. If we find alternative energy sources, this would also be a step in the right direction. Yet, I did not read on how to combat the use of toxic sustances globally. Maybe it was merely not covered in the course, or not on the seminars I attended. I have however read other literature on the subject, and they suggest limitations and prohibition foremost should be be done on a more global level, such as the EU. Also, they give suggestion on what one can do on a personal level, as to how to avoid toxicity at home.
About thinking long term, and how to change the climate change. I once watched a documentary on television about six people who were pioneers in the environmental movement around the 1970s. They truly thought for change and that the government so to speak would wake up and take action. We could make a complete reverse, if only we acted now, was their message. They documentary said that only a few people thought such long term as these six people. They thought up unto six generations forward. I believe this is true, and I do admire them for taking action, since much of today´s environmental revolution is originated in their work. But, I do wonder if are all meant to think six generations forward.
To be honest, should we all think long term, and how easy is that? Consider a family of seven. The parents work fulltime to make food on the table, and rest of the time is used for the children, spending time with family, going for walks, and once in a while making a longer trip to relatives 5 hours away. The hours basically goes away quickly every week. They do not have time to be involved in anything political, nor money to buy organic. To say the least, they really do not care to be environmentally friendly, for there is too much hassel to even start going about it. And how much difference would it make? If their children is happy is all that matters to them, and if they could not see a direct connection to their action environmentally wise and the mental or physical state of their children, could they care less? Even if they wanted to care or do care is it to difficult to adjust to environmental friendly choices.
Here I believe companies and the society comes into play. If there are laws on the political level, people do not have to choose so much and make inconveinient changes in their lives, but can simply choose environmental friendly choices simply because there are almost no other choices to make, let us say in a store. The company has already made the changes for them. Of course, changes can be difficult for companies to make as well, but are they pushed from politicans, are they more motivated to make that change. Thus, for the mom and dad with five children, the best move they can make environmentally is to vote for politians who will put the right questions forward in this discussion.
To be frank, however, I doubt we can actually combat climate change. We can do all that we can yes, and it will make a difference, but I still believe it will not suffice. We have put ourselves in a horrendous mess. I think we do not know how bad we have actually treated the Earth. We have introduced foreign substances (synthezised) which we do not know the long term effect of. I believe one of the greatest dilemmas is to get everyone to cooperate. (Even if we could, would we be able to undo the damage we have done?)
Why do I believe the greatest dilemma to combat climate change is to get everyone to cooperate? To me it seems like the environmentalists think that only if the message get out to everyone, do everyone or most people want to join and combat climate change. For the good-hearted ones, I believe they will, and therefore I am all for the environmental movement, for we do have a responsibility to steward nature and wild life. But I also believe that there will be many people, no matter how much they know, will not care at all. And others, who will outright work against it.
Why people who do not care at all and the ones who will work against it will do it for mostly two reasons in my opinion: selfishness and money. It is craving things for oneself, not caring about the consequences of others. I believe that no matter how much one tries to convince them, they will not change, period. So, I consider the environmental movement should grow and do even more good works, while I believe they should also understand their limits: they will possibly not change the whole world, and people will also work against them. But yet I would say, do not give up in changing the world for the better! For you never know who else will join the movement and how much change can be done.
|February 18, 2016 at 07:38 #17642|
Finally, my final paper:
List of Seminars Attended
1. Tue 12 Jan: Finale and new beginning
13 February Donald Worster on Environmental History
10 March IHOPE
24 March Urban Ecology Workshop
21 April Pre-opposition of Ma Theses
22 September Cont. Past Solutions for Future Transitions, Working with Undergraduate Education
26 October From Natural to cultural Landscapes
Tue 17 Nov Nature, Narrative and Environmental History
About the Course
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