601 episodes

Interviews with Environmental Scientists about their New Books
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New Books in Environmental Studies Marshall Poe

    • Science
    • 4.5 • 13 Ratings

Interviews with Environmental Scientists about their New Books
Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/environmental-studies

    Paolo Squatriti, "Weeds and the Carolingians: Empire, Culture, and Nature in Frankish Europe, AD 750-900" (Cambridge UP, 2022)

    Paolo Squatriti, "Weeds and the Carolingians: Empire, Culture, and Nature in Frankish Europe, AD 750-900" (Cambridge UP, 2022)

    In Weeds and the Carolingians: Empire, Culture, and Nature in Frankish Europe, AD 750–900 (Cambridge University Press, 2021), Dr. Paolo Squatriti asks: Why did weeds matter in the Carolingian empire? What was their special significance for writers in eighth- and ninth-century Europe and how was this connected with the growth of real weeds?
    In early medieval Europe, unwanted plants that persistently appeared among crops created extra work, reduced productivity, and challenged theologians who believed God had made all vegetation good. For the first time, in this book weeds emerge as protagonists in early medieval European history, driving human farming strategies and coloring people's imagination. Early medieval Europeans' effort to create agroecosystems that satisfied their needs and cosmologies that confirmed Christian accounts of vegetable creation both had to come to terms with unruly plants. Using diverse kinds of texts, fresh archaeobotanical data, and even mosaics, this interdisciplinary study reveals how early medieval Europeans interacted with their environments.
    This interview was conducted by Dr. Miranda Melcher whose doctoral work focused on post-conflict military integration, understanding treaty negotiation and implementation in civil war contexts, with qualitative analysis of the Angolan and Mozambican civil wars.
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    • 52 min
    Max Foran, "The Subjugation of Canadian Wildlife: Failures of Principle and Policy" (McGill-Queen's UP, 2018)

    Max Foran, "The Subjugation of Canadian Wildlife: Failures of Principle and Policy" (McGill-Queen's UP, 2018)

    Hardly a day goes by without news of the extinction or endangerment of yet another animal species, followed by urgent but largely unheeded calls for action. An eloquent denunciation of the failures of Canada's government and society to protect wildlife from human exploitation, Max Foran's The Subjugation of Canadian Wildlife: Failures of Principle and Policy (McGill-Queen's UP, 2018) argues that a root cause of wildlife depletions and habitat loss is the culturally ingrained beliefs that underpin management practices and policies.
    Tracing the evolution of the highly contestable assumptions that define the human–wildlife relationship, Foran stresses the price wild animals pay for human self-interest. Using several examples of government oversight at the federal, provincial, and territorial levels, from the Species at Risk Act to the Biodiversity Strategy, Protected Areas Network, and provincial management plans, this volume shows that wildlife policies are as much – or more – about human needs, priorities, and profit as they are about preservation. Challenging established concepts including ecological integrity, adaptive management, sport hunting as conservation, and the flawed belief that wildlife is a renewable resource, the author compels us to recognize animals as sentient individuals and as integral components of complex ecological systems.
    Kyle Johannsen is an academic philosopher who does research in animal and environmental ethics, and in political philosophy. His most recent book is Wild Animal Ethics: The Moral and Political Problem of Wild Animal Suffering (Routledge, 2021). You can follow him on Twitter @KyleJohannsen2.
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    • 47 min
    The Future of Net Zero: A Discussion with Eric Lonergan

    The Future of Net Zero: A Discussion with Eric Lonergan

    There is no shortage of words written about climate change and the goal of reaching net zero - but there is a shortage of practical suggestions about to get to net zero. Even governments committed to net zero are wondering how they are going to do it. Eric Lonergan has tried to address that problem with the book Super Charge Me: Net Zero Faster (Agenda, 2022) - co-authored with Corrine Sawyers - which sets out to suggest ways Net Zero can be achieved.
    Owen Bennett-Jones is a freelance journalist and writer. A former BBC correspondent and presenter he has been a resident foreign correspondent in Bucharest, Geneva, Islamabad, Hanoi and Beirut. He is recently wrote a history of the Bhutto dynasty which was published by Yale University Press.
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    • 49 min
    Ron Broglio, "Animal Revolution" (U Minnesota Press, 2022)

    Ron Broglio, "Animal Revolution" (U Minnesota Press, 2022)

    Animals are staging a revolution—they’re just not telling us. From radioactive boar invading towns to jellyfish disarming battleships, Animal Revolution (U Minnesota Press, 2022) threads together news accounts and more in a powerful and timely work of creative, speculative nonfiction that imagines a revolution stirring and asks how humans can be a part of it. If the coronavirus pandemic has taught us anything, it is that we should pay attention to how we bump up against animal worlds and how animals will push back. Animal Revolution is a passionate, provocative, cogent call for us to do so.
    Ron Broglio reveals how fur and claw and feather and fin are jamming the gears of our social machine. We can try to frame such disruptions as environmental intervention or through the lens of philosophy or biopolitics, but regardless the animals persist beyond our comprehension in reminding us that we too are part of an animal world. Animals see our technologies and machines as invasive beings and, in a nonlinguistic but nonetheless intensive mode of communicating with us, resist our attempts to control them and diminish their habitats. In doing so, they expose the environmental injustices and vulnerabilities in our systems.
    A witty, informative, and captivating work—at the juncture of posthumanism, animal studies, phenomenology, and environmental studies—Broglio reminds us of our inadequacy as humans, not our exceptionalism.
    Ron Broglio is professor of English, director of Desert Humanities, and associate director of the Institute for Humanities Research at Arizona State University. He is author or editor of several books, including Beasts of Burden: Biopolitics, Labor, and Animal Life and Surface Encounters: Thinking with Animals and Art.
    Callie Smith is a poet and a PhD candidate in English at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.
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    • 50 min
    Adam Sundberg, "Natural Disaster at the Closing of the Dutch Golden Age" (Cambridge UP, 2022)

    Adam Sundberg, "Natural Disaster at the Closing of the Dutch Golden Age" (Cambridge UP, 2022)

    By the early eighteenth century, the economic primacy, cultural efflorescence, and geopolitical power of the Dutch Republic appeared to be waning. The end of this Golden Age was also an era of natural disasters. Between the late seventeenth and the mid-eighteenth century, Dutch communities weathered numerous calamities, including river and coastal floods, cattle plagues, and an outbreak of strange mollusks that threatened the literal foundations of the Republic. 
    Adam Sundberg’s new book, Natural Disaster at the Closing of the Dutch Golden Age (Cambridge UP, 2022), demonstrates that these disasters emerged out of longstanding changes in environment and society. They were also fundamental to the Dutch experience and understanding of eighteenth-century decline. Disasters provoked widespread suffering, but they also opened opportunities to retool management strategies, expand the scale of response, and to reconsider the ultimate meaning of catastrophe. This book reveals a dynamic and often resilient picture of a society coping with calamity at odds with historical assessments of eighteenth-century stagnation.
    Douglas Bell is a writer, teacher, and historian who lives in the Netherlands. His research interests center on American military history, American foreign policy, German history, and European Studies. Tweet him @douglasibell.
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    • 1 hr 39 min
    J. R. McNeill and Peter Engelke, "The Great Acceleration: An Environmental History of the Anthropocene since 1945" (Harvard UP, 2016)

    J. R. McNeill and Peter Engelke, "The Great Acceleration: An Environmental History of the Anthropocene since 1945" (Harvard UP, 2016)

    The Earth has entered a new age—the Anthropocene—in which humans are the most powerful influence on global ecology. Since the mid-twentieth century, the accelerating pace of energy use, greenhouse gas emissions, and population growth has thrust the planet into a massive uncontrolled experiment. J. R. McNeill and Peter Engelke's book The Great Acceleration: An Environmental History of the Anthropocene since 1945 (Harvard UP, 2016) explains its causes and consequences, highlighting the role of energy systems, as well as trends in climate change, urbanization, and environmentalism.
    More than any other factor, human dependence on fossil fuels inaugurated the Anthropocene. Before 1700, people used little in the way of fossil fuels, but over the next two hundred years coal became the most important energy source. When oil entered the picture, coal and oil soon accounted for seventy-five percent of human energy use. This allowed far more economic activity and produced a higher standard of living than people had ever known—but it created far more ecological disruption.
    We are now living in the Anthropocene. The period from 1945 to the present represents the most anomalous period in the history of humanity’s relationship with the biosphere. Three-quarters of the carbon dioxide humans have contributed to the atmosphere has accumulated since World War II ended, and the number of people on Earth has nearly tripled. So far, humans have dramatically altered the planet’s biogeochemical systems without consciously managing them. If we try to control these systems through geoengineering, we will inaugurate another stage of the Anthropocene. Where it might lead, no one can say for sure.
    J.R. McNeill holds the appointment of University Professor at Georgetown University, serving as a faculty member of the School of Foreign Service and History Department. Professor McNeill is also a past president of American Society for Environmental History and the American Historical Association.
    Peter Engelke is the Deputy Director of Foresight at the Atlantic Council’s Scowcroft Strategy Initiative and a Nonresident Senior Fellow, Global Energy Center.
    Brady McCartney is an interdisciplinary environmental social scientist at the University of Florida. Email: Brady.McCartney@UFL.edu
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    • 1 hr 8 min

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